Thought by many to be the greatest player of all time, Dan Carter has been looking back at his career in an inspiring social media post. Today marks the 20th anniversary of his first appearance for the famous All Blacks – a side for which he achieved 112 caps and scored almost 1600 points.
Carter was a winner of not just one, but two consecutive World Cups in 2011 and 2015, as they became the most successful international side in the history of the tournament at the time.
The three-time World Player of the Year spent the majority of his career in Christchurch, with the Crusaders, before stints in both France and Japan and finally returning to New Zealand as a player-coach for the Blues. Unfortunately for Carter, he was not able to take to the field alongside the likes of Beauden Barrett and Caleb Clarke thanks to recurring injuries that kept his ageing body on the sideline.
Now happily retired, Carter has time to reflect on the wonderful career that inspired so many. Writing on social media, Carter said:
“Today marks the 20th anniversary of my @allblacks debut, a milestone that carries a wave of emotions and memories that words can hardly capture.
“I write this in awe, reflecting upon the journey that has shaped me, both as a player and as a person. The moments of triumph, lessons learned in defeat, the sacrifices made in pursuit of perfection, and the unwavering support of my teammates, family and fans who have stood by my side throughout it all.
“From the humble beginnings on the rugby fields of Southbridge to the grand stages of World Cups and Lions tours, every step of this extraordinary adventure has left a lasting mark.
“But amidst the trophies and roaring stadiums, it is the camaraderie, the brotherhood, that truly defines the All Blacks legacy. The bonds forged over countless battles, the shared sweat and tears, and the unbreakable unity between us all. It is an honour to have been part of this incredible lineage, to have worn the silver fern with pride, and to have contributed to the All Blacks’ rich tapestry.
“Looking back on these 20 years, I’m filled with immense gratitude for every person who has believed in me. To my family, whose unwavering love has been my anchor. To my teammates and coaches, who have challenged and inspired me. And to the fans, whose unrelenting passion has been the fuel that propelled me forward.
“Thank you, New Zealand, and thank you, All Blacks, for giving me the privilege of representing our nation on the world stage. As I embark on the next chapter, I’m filled with pride, nostalgia, and a profound sense of accomplishment. The legacy continues, the black jersey endures, and the spirit of the All Blacks lives on.”
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