Rugby: Damian McKenzie says Rieko Ioane is the fastest All Black across 100 metres

Rugby: Damian McKenzie says Rieko Ioane is the fastest All Black across 100 metres

The fastest All Black in a 100 metre sprint would be Rieko Ioane, according to teammate Damian McKenzie.

Ioane has long been recognised as one of the quickest members of the All Blacks squad and showcased his speed once again in his individual try during the team’s loss to France last month.

And now Ioane has been officially crowned the fastest by his teammate McKenzie.

Speaking on the What a Lad podcast, McKenzie said Ioane would easily be the fastest in the squad across 100 metres.

“Yeah he’s rapid aye; he’s quick,” McKenzie said of Ioane.

The fullback admitted he might not even make the top five in the squad, but said he’d probably fare a lot better over a shorter distance.

“I don’t know where I would be,” he added. “If I was in the top five I would be doing very well I’d say. All those wingers, they’re rapid. Beaudy (Beauden Barrett), they’re all pretty quick. My best is probably over a short distance; I start to fade getting late in the 100 metres.”

Rugby: Damian McKenzie says Rieko Ioane is the fastest All Black across 100 metres

Rieko Ioane and Damian McKenzie during an All Blacks training session. Photo / Photosport

McKenzie also named Aaron Smith and Richie Mo’unga as some of the quickest in the squad over a shorter 10 metre span.

McKenzie’s claim was backed up by former Blues hooker and Ioane teammate James Parsons, who told the Aotearoa Rugby Pod that the fastest speed he saw Ioane clock was a whopping 39.6km/h.

“I don’t know if you remember in Perth, he chased back about 40 or 50 metres to stop a try,” Parsons said.

“He did it the other day against the French as well, and we’re seeing more often, I suppose, his speed allowing him to make some real big defensive plays as well as the attacking stuff, so I think Rieks should be really proud of his year and what he delivered for the All Blacks.

“It’s just that injection of pace. It’s just so lethal, and we haven’t seen it, I suppose, in the defensive side [of his game].

“We’ve always known him for the attacking [side of his game], but I think he got up to 39km/h when he was chasing back [to tackle Tom Banks]… But he’s a freak when it comes to that stuff.

“The best thing this year, more often than not, we saw him pull it out in big moments and score good tries, but also save them.”

Rugby: Damian McKenzie says Rieko Ioane is the fastest All Black across 100 metres

Rieko Ioane in action against France. Photo / Photosport

Former All Blacks coach Steve Hansen has also previously mentioned Ioane’s pace: “Gilly (All Blacks trainer Nic Gill) has timed him and he’s running 35-37km/h.”

If Parsons’ claim is true, it would put Ioane among the fastest rugby players in history. According to a list of speeds published by RugbyPass last year, former England flyer Christian Wade has clocked the fastest time in XVs rugby at 39.96km/h.

Meanwhile, the ‘fastest man in rugby’ title likely belongs to American sevens specialist Carlin Isles, the former sprinter who has a 100m personal best of 10.15 seconds. He has also reportedly reached speeds of 41.4km/h.

While Ioane may lay claim to being the fastest in the current All Blacks squad, former winger Doug Howlett might take the title in the all-time stakes, having reportedly recorded a 10.68s time across 100m during his career.

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