Jarrad Hoeata outside Forsyth Barr Stadium this week. Photo
by Gregor Richardson.
Jarrad Hoeata just wants to get back to a simple life -
on the rugby field, anyway.
Hoeata (29) enters his third season as a Highlander looking
to do what he does best, and to avoid paralysis by analysis.
''I have gone back and made myself simple goals which was
what I did when I first came down here,'' he said.
''My main goal is to make the starting line-up for the
Highlanders. I know if I make the starting line-up, play
well, then those other things will take care of themselves.
''That is what I did the first year. Last year, barring the
injury, I set myself a whole lot of goals. It got too
complicated. For me, it works best when I just set simple
goals and work towards them.''
Hoeata made the All Blacks in 2011 but did not make the World
Cup squad. A nasty chest injury meant he did not start for
the Highlanders until mid-season last year and never really
hit his best form.
But that is in the past, and the focus is the future. The
signing of key All Black players can only do good things for
''We've just got to get rid of that battler tag of going out
and giving our guts. In some games that was enough and in
other games we were not quite good enough.
''This time, if we do that and play well we should win most
games. The roster is a bit better now and when we are playing
well we should beat teams now.''
Hoeata had a break after last season, holidaying on the Gold
Coast, before coming into camp before Christmas.
He said all the new faces had fitted in well. Their
experience was coming through but they were not overbearing.
''I wondered what it was going to all come together like. But
it has all been pretty seamless. They [new players] have been
awesome. They add their bits and pieces here and there. It
was good for the team. There is a core group here. These
other guys brought in are some pretty heavy hitters.''
Hoeata, who has been named vice-captain tonight, will play at
lock against the Chiefs but is also seen as a blindside
flanker. To him, the number on the back is exactly that -
just a number.