Two All Black greats who used to share on-field tactics are now swapping advice on the supermarket trade.

As Eric Rush comes to grips with his new role as owner-operator of the Browns Bay New World, former teammate Robin Brooke is making moves to sell the New World he owns in Tauranga to buy a bigger branch in Warkworth.

Rush said yesterday that he spoke to Brooke almost four years ago, when he first began thinking of the new career path.

"I rang him for advice ... he said to me: 'Getting a supermarket is like making the All Blacks all over again, it's a tough thing - not everybody gets there'."

Brooke was referring to the three-and- a-half years involved in qualifying to own and operate a New World store. Like Brooke, Rush started out by learning the basics.

"I was sweeping the floors in produce and cutting cabbages. I thought: 'Oh this is cool.' It sort of developed from there.

"I think the attraction for me is, I like a bit of competition and they said it's pretty tough to get in - not many get through. And that was just like a red flag to a bull.

"You can't just walk in off the street and buy a supermarket, it doesn't matter how much money you've got, which is the way I like it - a lot of the same principles of being an All Black.

"It's a different club to get involved with. It's a great bunch of guys."

Asked how his job of three weeks was going, Rush said: "Good, good - I had four hours off last night," with a beaming grin.

"It's been flat out - 18-hour days, but that's good. It's expected from you."

The 45-year-old, who used to own a building company and was a lawyer before rugby went professional, said the job wasn't too different from his playing days.

"It's a very rigid training regime.

"The hard thing about it is ... the hard work starts now. It's a bit like making the All Blacks.

"You do all that stuff to get into the team and actually that's when it starts because people are watching you then, your performance is being judged."

He's spending his first few months getting to know more than 70 staff in 19 different departments and thriving on the new challenge.

Foodstuffs confirmed last night that Brooke, who has owned the Gate Pa store in Tauranga for four years, is in negotiations to buy the Warkworth store.

Brooke, who grew up in Aharoa, west of the town, said through a spokeswoman that he was excited about the prospect of contributing towards the community.