Coronavirus: All Blacks coach Ian Foster charges on with test planning

All Blacks coach Ian Foster is preparing for a dramatically revised international schedule, as COVID-19 continues to cripple the sporting world.

The All Blacks won't be in action until their July series with Scotland and Wales, but Foster has urged flexibility before their first encounter of the year.

Foster's recent overseas travel means he's currently in the 14-day quarantine, but he has far more pressing concerns.

With Super Rugby on hold for the foreseeable future, his first test series in charge is increasingly uncertain.

"We're going ahead with our planning, based on the opposition we think we're playing," Foster told Newshub. "When we play them, we don't know."

But nothing has stopped Foster's planning.

He remains in constant contact with his assistants - albeit now from the comfort of his couch - to ensure when rugby does resume, the All Blacks aren't playing catch up.

"We've got to make sure we don't waste this time, because we don't know what's going to happen in the future.

"The more we can do now, the more flexible we can be later on."

And that goes for the make-up of his first squad as well. 

With his top players unlikely to see any action until a new domestic competition is given the green light, the responsibility for monitoring them falls on Super Rugby coaches. 

Foster. Photo credit: Getty

"They're our first port of call, with our senior players, to make sure they're doing what they need to in the franchise set up."

Coronavirus has also put a stop to community rugby for a month and Foster believes the All Blacks now have a greater responsibility to bring the game out of the dark.

"People will be looking for things that can pull the community together. The All Blacks are at the sharp end of our game and clearly we're gonna have a role to play."

They hope to fulfill that role sooner, rather than later.