The Baptism of the Baby-Faced Assassin - Damian McKenzie's All Black Debut

The Baptism of the Baby-Faced Assassin - Damian McKenzie's All Black Debut

From his dazzling footwork to his trademark, inexplicable cheeky smile before he strokes a ball through the uprights, Damian McKenzie has become one of the most well-known and celebrated young players in the world.

Born in 1995 in Invercagill, McKenzie made his Super Rugby debut for the Chiefs in 2015 and has remained at the union ever since. Somewhat slight of build compared to his generally hulking compatriots, McKenzie punches high above his weight in terms of bravery, routinely putting his body on the line at ruck time and never ducking an opportunity to take on big forwards on both attack and defence.



His fearless running and creative rugby mind rendered him fit for All Black selection in the eyes of then head coach Steve Hansen, and he was thrown into the international mix for the first time against Argentina on 1 October 2016, putting in a useful, energetic display:

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