At the highest levels Rieko Ioane is no longer a finisher on the wing. He's now an organiser at centre.
After stellar form at centre for the Blues in Super Rugby Aotearoa, his selection there for the North Island shows that the All Blacks selectors also see his future as a centre, rather than as a wing.
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It's a path the 23-year-old has been wanting to follow since his sensational All Blacks form in 2017 as a wing saw him named world breakthrough player of the year.
When I interviewed him a week after the Lions' series in 2017 that made his name, he was careful to avoid offending the All Blacks selectors, but clear on his future goal. He was "happy to play anywhere. But centre is where I played at school, and it's still my favourite position".
He actually didn't need to worry about treading on toes as, later in 2017, All Blacks coach Steve Hansen would note of Ioane that "I have always thought he was a centre, but he is a guy who can play on the wing and that allows us to give him a little bit of time to feel comfortable in the role."
In some ways, when it comes to his playing position, Ioane has almost been a victim of his own blistering speed. He's the fastest All Black, timed by fitness coach Nic Gill running as quickly as 37km/h.
The equation - tallest guy plays lock, fastest plays on the wing - has been used in rugby since the game began, and it usually applies at all levels, from Saturday morning juniors to test teams.
Ioane's path in rugby began at halfback and first five-eighth when he began secondary school. It was only when, in his father Eddie's words, "he sprouted in the fifth form" that he started to move out along the backline.
What Ioane's brought to the 13 jersey for the Blues this year has been not only attacking sharpness, but also very solid defence, and astute distribution.
And at the Blues he had, in Tana Umaga, a perfect advisor about what's needed to transition from wing to centre.
When Umaga was playing for Wellington, the Hurricanes and the All Blacks in the late 1990s he started to chafe as a wing, believing, correctly, that his future lay at centre.
At the start of 2000 Umaga even suggested he might leave Wellington if a change to the midfield wasn't on the table.
"If I want to stay at the top level I think I have to move in (to centre). My contract with Wellington comes up for renewal at the end of this year, so if an opportunity with another province came up I'd have to look at it."
For Umaga, who began his sporting journey as a kid playing league on Saturday mornings for Wainuiomata as a loose forward (in a No 13 jersey which he came to feel was his lucky number) and rugby for Parkway College in the afternoon, that was a dramatic statement.
As it happened, at the end of 2000, Umaga, at 27 and after 24 tests on the wing, got his All Blacks break at centre and never looked back. When he retired at the end of 2005 he was the All Blacks captain and one of the most respected centres in world rugby.
When Umaga, as pragmatic as he's intelligent, was still head coach at the Blues in 2018, he had some sage words of advice for Ioane about a move infield to centre.
Being a wing, he suggested, was "a good place to start and get a real understanding of what a midfielder wants. When you're on the wing you're always talking to your midfield telling them to give you the ball. So once he (Ioane) goes into the midfield, and his winger keeps asking him for the ball, he'll know what it feels like."
For Ioane, the switch to centre also seems to have ignited a flame that looked last year, when he wasn't even making the bench for the knockout games at the World Cup in Japan, to be not so much flickering, as burning out.
As it happens, for the Ioanes, there are good reasons for a double celebration, with loose forward Akira, who missed out altogether on 2019 World Cup selection, back in the inner circle, on the side of the North scrum.
Akira was marked for success from the time he was playing sevens for the Auckland provincial side while still at Auckland Grammar.
But, as Akira revealed to Liam Napier five weeks ago, in a compelling, refreshingly honest, interview, the kid who had once played with a fierce joy, had allowed critics, even online trolls, to rob him of the joy he had once found when he played.
In one of life's odd twists, it took Covid-19 and Level 4 restrictions for him to find his way again. He told Napier, "That lockdown period, it was just me, my family and my partner. Time away from rugby, time away from the outside noise. It was nice. It was peaceful. As lockdown went on, it got better and better and I started feeling a lot fitter and faster. When I came back, I was in probably the best shape I've been in for a while."
His work rate in Super Rugby Aotearoa is what brought Akira back into the national fold. He's also been more available, and more determined, to take the ball up into the hard defence channels.
For a man as big as he is, at 113kg bigger than Jerome Kaino was in his All Blacks days, Akira Ioane is stunningly fast, so quick that his natural instinct used to be to seek to fend, spin and step into space, so he could stretch out and run.
What must have impressed Ian Foster and his selectors this year is how well Ioane is making decisions over whether to look for the open field or to take the tougher options.
In blunt terms more crash and bash will serve Ioane, and the All Blacks, well.