He supplanted Rodney So"oialo as the All Blacks first-choice number 8 in 2009, and can also play blind-side flanker and lock. Read was brought up, and played his childhood rugby in the small town of Drury in the Counties Manukau region just south of Auckland. Read excelled in all aspects of school life, especially the sports field
He performed with distinction, gaining top marks all the way through to the end of seventh form.
He was Head Boy of the 2000-student school, as well as Sportsman of the Year and Sports All-rounder of the Year. Read was also a talented cricketer, representing Northern District age group teams and being selected for the New Zealand U17 tournament side in 2002.
Provincial Many dubbed him as an up-and-coming Black Cap, as his ability as a batsman was just as obviously exceptional as his skills as a rugby player. But Read focused his efforts on rugby, and only one year out of high school, he was selected by the Canterbury R.F.U, and began his professional career in their development squad.
Rising quickly through the ranks, Read played his first North.P.C game in 2006, his second year out of college.
Super Rugby Read proceeded to play for the Crusaders in the Super 14 in 2007, and secured his position as the starting blind-side in the team in 2008. He first captained the side in 2011, standing in for an injured Richie McCaw. In 2012, Read led the team for their first 10 matches while McCaw was rested.
In 2013, another extended rest for McCaw saw Read named captain, although Read he six consecutive games with a toe injury.
All Blacks Read was first selected for the All Blacks on the end of season tour in 2008, and became a regular first choice selection in 2009. He made his debut against Scotland 8 November 2008.
In 2010 Read was named New Zealand Rugby Player of the Year. In 2013, he was named captain of the All Blacks in place of Richie McCaw who was on sabbatical.
On 15 June 2013, Read played his 50th test, which coincided with All Blacks 500th test match in the second match of the series between New Zealand and France at International Medical Association Stadium.
That year Read claimed rugby"s top honour in the Institutional Review Board Player of the Year. Following Richie McCaw"s retirement in November 2015, Read is expected to be named captain of the next All Blacks squad, to be named prior to the Wales tests in 2016. Read has already had nine of his 84 test caps as captain − once in 2012, six times in 2013 and once each in 2014 and "15.
He knows what the role entails, he"s familiar with its demands, and he"s comfortable with the extra pressures and responsibilities that go with lieutenant
He"s spent eight seasons in the All Blacks learning off the very best we"ve had, so there will be no surprises for Read, and certainly no issues for him to overcome. He"s seen it all. As a hardened, first-choice senior All Black and leader, he has the respect of every rugby player in New Zealand.
In 2016, Read has been promoted from vice-captain to captain of All Blacks following the retirement of Richie McCaw.
He was a key member of 2011 and 2015 Rugby World Cup winning teams, becoming one of only twenty dual Rugby World Cup winners.