And he now has a new chance to impress after being called up from the Junior All Blacks team, which is currently playing in the Pacific Nations Cup tournament.
New Zealand are likely to be without locks Ali Williams and Keith Robinson for the upcoming Tri-Nations series. Williams broke his jaw in the 61-10 victory over France while Robinson injured his calf muscle in the pre-match warm-up.
The Tri-Nations begins with South Africa versus Australia in Cape Town on June 16. New Zealand kick-off their campaign against the Springboks in Durban on 23 June.
But Rawlinson could get a taste of the action when the All Blacks face Canada this weekend, with the team announced on Wednesday.