Rugby Sevens: New NZ recruit Payton Spencer embracing pressure of carrying famous surname

New All Blacks Sevens recruit Payton Spencer is embracing the inevitable pressure of carrying the famous rugby surname, after he was revealed as one of three new recruits.

The Hamilton Boys High School star is the son of former All Blacks first-five Carlos Spencer and has been touted as a potential star in his own right for some time.

Spencer, 18, has signed a two-year commitment with NZ Sevens, as they build towards the Paris Olympics next year.

He knows all too well the expectations that come with carrying the Spencer name, but it's a challenge he won't shy away from - just don't expect him to emulate King Carlos' flashy moves.

"Nah, I couldn't say I've done them yet," he said. "I don't know if I want to try them, I [don't think] I have the guts like him yet, but we'll see in the future.

"I was stoked to get this opportunity to go into a professional environment straight away - it was quite a big deal. To get this contract was massive.

"I think playing fullback in XVs helps me quite a bit, you use a similar skillset in sevens when you're playing No.15. It's not too hard - there's a little bit you have to change, but not too much.

"I think there's always going to be pressure, having the Spencer name. It's not just going to go away but I think I embrace it, I don't shy away from it.

"Obviously, the Olympics in 2024, I think that's everyone's goal here, so to make the Olympics and go to Paris would be a dream come true."

Spencer may make his All Blacks Sevens debut at this weekend's Hamilton leg of the world series.

Carlos Spencer.
Carlos Spencer. Photo credit: Getty Images

Coach Clarke Laidlaw is excited by what he's seen so far and expects the dual-sport star to thrive in the NZ environment.

"Obviously really good stock, coming from his dad Carlos Spencer," he said. "He is a great athlete, typical Hamilton Boys... knows how to work hard, knows how to train really well and is a great product of their system. 

"He has a good skillset, a beautiful passer... a big, tall rangy athlete. He has not played a lot of sevens, he has played a lot of cricket over the summer and is outstanding. 

"We are excited how quickly he can pick up the game and his ability to play sevens. It has been great to see his skills develop during induction over the last couple of weeks."