All Blacks tuning up for Lions in northern hemisphere

Beauden Barrett believes New Zealand's year-end tour of the northern hemisphere will stand them in good stead when the British and Irish Lions visit next year.

The All Blacks had their world-record 18-game winning run snapped by Ireland in Chicago, before smashing Italy and gaining revenge over the Irish in Dublin last week.

Barrett's performances have been under intense scrutiny this year as he fills the number 10 shirt vacated by Dan Carter after the 2015 Rugby World Cup triumph.

The 25-year-old has responded with 155 points in 12 Tests, more than doubling his previous tally, but he expects a stern challenge in the final game of the tour against France in Paris this weekend.

"They're an exciting side with a lot of athletes in their team so you've got to be ready for that," Barrett said. 

"Expect the unexpected you always say when you come up against these guys and they are big and fast across the park so our defensive systems are going to have to be pretty sharp on Saturday.

"When you come up north you face different opposition and a different style of rugby and we've seen that with Italy and Ireland respectively. 

"It's good for us with what's around the corner."

Jerome Kaino also believes the future looks bright for the All Blacks as they continue to readjust to life without the likes of Richie McCaw, Ma'a Nonu and Carter.

"I take my hat off to the coaching staff who did a lot of planning during the season," Kaino said. 

"Us players were aware of it, but all we had to do was come in with the right attitude to be able to take that challenge on.

"The guys returning from last year, but also the new guys who have been injected into the squad have all added to that and it's been a really enjoyable season. 

"But this is only one year. We've got to continue that next year as well if we're lucky enough to be selected. It's a great challenge and an exciting time. It's not just a one-off, it's a continuing thing."

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