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Drummond looking to build on back of break

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Tuesday, February 12, 2019    Lynn McConnell    Getty Images

Having achieved Test status at the end of the year, Drummond didn't have to join the Crusaders until the start of January.

"I had to tell myself to stay away in December but I think that made a big difference and from the start of January I was fizzing and ready to get back to work

The break was nice and the longest spell he had ever had off since started playing for the side.

Drummond said it had been a long pre-season and it was time to go now.

"We've enjoyed the last month or so but it is pretty exciting knowing it is all go this weekend," he said.

While there was inevitable talk about the prospect of a three-peat of titles, especially in the media, that wasn't something the players were talking about. They were just focusing on what was next.

"It's the short term because if we don't nail that the big picture stuff…we're not even talking about it," he said.

While the Blues looked to have had a good pre-season you couldn't read too much into that as teams were looking at their personnel and not showing too much.

"There's little things that we've looked at and will take into this weekend," he said.

While there were some identifiable aspects of former Crusaders assistant coach Leon MacDonald's touches to the Blues the Crusaders were looking forward to the challenge that represented in Saturday's game, he said.

Becoming a fully fledged All Black last season had been a dream come true, just as it would be for any young New Zealand player but his aim now was working to be as consistent as possible for the Crusaders.

Drummond said while he and Bryn Hall were halfback rivals they were also good mates and worked together whoever was playing, or coming off the bench, for the benefit of the team.

They had been able to show how complementary they were to the team's pattern and the game never slowed down when they were inter-changed because of the way their partnership had worked.

"We compete with each other and, obviously, hand in hand with that is trying to get better. I think when there's competition for spots, and with each other, it brings out the best in both of us.

"I'd like to think I've made Bryn a better player because he's made me better because of what we've had to do to stay with each other," he said.