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Warren Gatland’s Son And Sonny Bill Williams Could Be Super 18 Teammates This Weekend

DUNEDIN, NEW ZEALAND - OCTOBER 28: Bryn Gatland of North Harbour tries to break the defence during the Mitre 10 Championships Final match between Otago and North Harbour at Forsyth Barr Stadium on October 28, 2016 in Dunedin, New Zealand. (Photo by Dianne Manson/Getty Images)

21-year-old flyhalf Bryn Gatland and All Black superstar Sonny Bill Williams may make their Auckland Blues debut appearances alongside each other in Super Rugby this weekend against the Highlanders. Gatland is the son of Warren, who will coach the touring Lions side against the Blues in June.

Gatland junior, who plays for North Harbour in the National Provincial Championship, is an injury cover call up after flyhalf Ihaia West was struck down with an ankle injury against the Western Force.

Gatland is likely to debut from the bench alongside Sonny Bill Williams, with Piers Francis almost certainly wearing the no.10 jersey in Dunedin. For Williams, it will be his first match back after sustaining a long-term achilles injury when playing for the New Zealand sevens team.

HONG KONG - APRIL 10: Sonny Bill Williams of New Zealan competes during the 2016 Hong Kong Sevens match between New Zealand and Wales at Hong Kong Stadium on April 10, 2016 in Hong Kong. (Photo by Juan Manuel Serrano Arce/Getty Images)

Before Blues coach Tana Umaga tapped him on the shoulder, Gatland had been training with the Blues pre-season and more recently the Crusaders after missing out on selection by the five New Zealand Super Rugby sides.

Gatland told the New Zealand Herald his transient status was not ideal.

“It is a bit strange being flown all over the country. It is tough being an injury replacement as you don’t have any certainty or stability. One minute you are in, the next you are out.”

However, with West being ruled out for four weeks, he is aware of the opportunity it presents.

¬†“If I get a chance to get on the field I’ll do what I can to put my best foot forward. You see it all the time, someone gets a little bit of an opportunity, they do well and it all works out for them.”

On the horizon, a potentially delicious encounter is a possibility: the June 7th game with his father’s team, the Lions. For Bryn Gatland, his focus remains on his Blues debut rather than the tantalising father-son matchup.

“It has been mentioned about a million times. I can’t look that too far ahead but it would be awesome.”

 Kaal Kaczmarek, Pundit Arena
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Author: The PA Team

This article was written by a member of The PA Team.