The All Blacks outside back, Ben Smith, expects this weekend's game against the South African Springboks to be one of New Zealand's greatest tests in the lead-up to the Rugby World Cup later this year.
Sunday morning's match is the first time the two sides will meet this year in the second round of the Rugby Championship at Ellis Park in Johannesburg.
The All Blacks are coming off a 39-18 win over Argentina in Christchurch, while the Springboks lost to Australia, 24-20, in the 82nd minute at Suncorp Stadium in Brisbane.
Smith, who missed the first two All Blacks Tests against Samoa and Argentina after winning the Super Rugby Championship with the Highlanders, said playing the Springboks in South Africa is always a tough challenge.
"This is one game you want to be involved in, it's an awesome spectical and the way that both games approach it, it's a pretty awesome game to be involved in."
"It's definitely up there as one of those games you want to play in."
Ben Smith also believes it's only a matter of time before Highlanders cum national team mate Lima Sopoaga gets his first New Zealand test cap.
"He just backs his instincts now, he's not afraid to make mistakes. He just goes out and throws everything on the line and that's probably how we got the results we have this season in Super Rugby, so I'm sure it'll be no different if he gets the chance in the black jersey, so for him I've just seen him really backing his skill sets and just getting out there and enjoying his rugby.
The All Blacks team will be named on Friday.