New Racing 92 fly-half Dan Carter is ready for the next chapter of his career and is keen to impress in his new surroundings.
Carter was unveiled at the Parisian club on Friday and said he has made peace with the fact that his Test career is over after 112 games for the All Blacks.
The 33-year-old has signed a three-year contract with Racing and is set to earn €1-million (US1,059,000) per year. But despite such a hefty salary, Carter said the financial aspect wasn’t the only reason for him moving to Paris.
“You can make pretty good money playing in New Zealand too, it’s not all bad,” he said at a press conference in Paris.
“It depends at what stage you’re at in your career. Because of that [higher salaries] it’s slightly more attractive to play in France, but… the thing is you can’t play international rugby any more for the All Blacks and that’s why I stayed in New Zealand for 13 years.
“But the timing is right to try a new challenge, not just for rugby but it’s a pretty exciting place to bring your family for a few years.”
Carter recently helped the All Blacks win their second successive World Cup. Another World Cup-winning pivot, England’s Jonny Wilkinson became a cult hero at Toulon during the latter part of his career.
Carter was asked if he hoped to match Wilkinson’s exploits in France and replied: “That would be amazing. He won multiple European championships, he won the Top 14 too and he had an amazing time here in France.
“When I was following the end of his career, I took a bit of inspiration from that. A lot of people had probably written him off up until then but it revived his career and he finished on a real high.
“I can only dream of the success that he had in his time here in France. We’ll have to wait and see.”