Willis Halaholo is fired up for his biggest game in a Cardiff Blues jersey to date.
The former Super Rugby winner has made 39 appearances for Wales’ Capital Region since making the move from Hurricanes in 2016.
The centre is excited at the prospect of competing for silverware, and is looking forward to the prospect of coming up against fellow countrymen, Conrad Smith and Benson Stanley, in midfield.
“Every game is a big game for myself, but this will probably be the biggest one. Hopefully we’ll have a sell-out crowd at the Arms Park so I’m looking forward to it,” said Halaholo.
“It’s a pretty massive occasion. The boys have put in the hard yards over the last three years and it’s good to be at a stage where we can play for a bit of silverware.
“The boys will be fizzing to get up this Saturday.
“At this stage of the season, any team can turn up on the day and win. A lot of the Pau boys will be experienced enough to come away from home and put in a performance.
“It’s going to be a real hard task for anyone that’s going out there against Benson and Conrad.
“Growing up in Auckland, Benson was highly rated in the system, when I was coming through high school.
“Everyone knows Conrad Smith, and what he can bring, so it will be a hard task but we’re looking forward to it.
“Conrad is a very talented man, an All Black, and I played with him at the ‘Canes. I learnt a lot from him.
“It will be a big task for us to challenge their boys. There’s a few other boys from New Zealand in there and they’ve got a strong team on paper but hopefully we can put them to be.”
Halaholo’s midfield partnership with Rey Lee-Lo has played a key role in the Blues’ fine run of form over the past three months.
Halaholo believes the pair, who are close friends off-the-field, are continuously getting stronger as a combination, but insists the challenge from team-mates such as Garyn Smith and Steven Shingler, who have impressed in recent week, are keeping them on their toes.
“It’s been alright! We’re still finding our feet as a partnership and I’m probably sick of seeing him around!
“On the field, we’ve started to click a lot more, but that comes down to the competition in the team. There are a few other midfielders in the team who are really pushing us, so that naturally brings the best out of us.
“Him, being the older one, he tells me what to do on the field, so that’s probably a cultural thing from back home and being a Pacific Islander.
“He tells me what to do and if want to tell him something, I say ‘please’ and ‘thank you’!”
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