Despite his initial frustration at being sidelined, the influential All Black has said that he is now appreciating his team's fortunes from a fan's perspective.
"Anger did creep in a little bit," he said. "I was just so gutted and didn't want anything to do with the World Cup. And then it hit me after five or six days and I realised the World Cup is here in my home country and I'm going to make the most of it like everyone else and actually get to some games.
"I wasn't going to get to any games, I dropped my lip a bit. I decided to get to the games and enjoy the atmosphere and it's been quite different for me. I've loved every minute of it - the people who have come into New Zealand for the World Cup and also the New Zealanders who have got right in behind it."
New Zealand take on France in the Rugby World Cup final at Eden Park, Auckland, on Sunday.