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Harris eyes All Black return

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 26/09/2016

Nathan Harris is dreaming big after a successful operation on his right knee as he chases a return to the All Blacks for their home series against the British and Irish Lions next year.

The Chiefs hooker had his season cruelly cut short last month when he ruptured his anterior cruciate ligament during a training session before the Bledisloe Cup Test against Australia.

Harris will now spend the next six to nine months on the sideline as he recovers from the surgery in what has been another disappointing twist to his injury-plagued career.

"I had a concussion during the year and that kept me out of the Chiefs for a while but towards the end of the season I started putting some good performances together and everything was tracking pretty well.

"For that [knee injury] to stump me at the last hurdle is very frustrating and does set you back a little bit with the goals you want to achieve" Harris said.

The 24-year-old missed all of last season after breaking his right ankle against the USA in Chicago.

Despite the setbacks he's still determined to play for the All Blacks again but will not be rushing to get back into Super Rugby next year.

"Obviously I want to target that Lions series but realistically my return is probably going to be after that.

"I'll be doing everything in my power to get back on the field as early as possible but you've got to listen to your body" Harris said.

The Bay of Plenty Steamers player is also in no rush to head off overseas with a year to run on his New Zealand Rugby contract.

"There is temptation out there but you've got to look towards what personally motivates you and for me I want to chase the black jersey."

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