Dan Carter Reveals How He Could Have Ended Up Playing for Ireland
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Things could have panned out very differently for Dan Carter.
The 33-year-old is viewed as one of the greatest players of all-time and an extract from his book has revealed that he came very close to moving to Ireland and pulling on a green jersey.
In the early days of professionalism and Carter’s career, a family friend had discovered that Carter had some Irish roots and he was offered a semi-professional contract here and a chance to play for Ireland.
“I was now a professional rugby player. Super Rugby players earned $65,000 a year as a base salary – a vast sum for a small-town boy like me. That came on top of the $10,000 a year base salary I was getting from Canterbury,” he wrote.
“I signed that deal for three years, which seemed pretty amazing for me at the time. I was still surprised that anyone wanted to pay me for playing the sport that I loved.
“In three years’ time, when I was an All Black and was starting to be pretty well known, that $10,000 contract would look like a bargain.
“I also didn’t have anyone advising me yet. Remember that rugby was still a baby when it came to professionalism. Along with the Canterbury contract, I was also offered a deal to play semi-professionally in Ireland.
” A friend of Dad’s was working over there, and had found some Irish blood which allowed me to turn out for them. Luckily the Canterbury deal was a little closer to home, otherwise who knows what colour jersey I’d have ended up wearing?.”
Carter is now plying his trade with Racing Metro in France, earning over €1m-a-year, after retiring from international rugby.