Shields in the dark over England availability

Hurricanes captain Brad Shields has not heard from New Zealand Rugby over whether he will be granted permission to tour South Africa with England and said the situation is "out of my control".

New Zealand Rugby chief executive Stew Tew last week confirmed the loose forward officially requested to be released from his contract in order to play for Eddie Jones' side during the Test window in June.

Tew said the governing body would not "muck around" with making a decision, but Wasps-bound Hurricanes skipper Shields says he is still in the dark.

"I haven't heard anything yet," Shields said.

"It's out of my control and my focus is on the game this week, and has been for the last couple of weeks.

"All I need to worry about is playing good rugby and whatever happens from here is out of my control."

The New Zealand-born 27-year-old says he remains as hungry as ever to start his international career with England.

"When I signed over in England playing Tests was obviously part of the plans," he said.

"As a player, your goal is always to play at that next level and that's my goal and always has been."

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