McCaw is hungry for more

Tue, 23 Jul 2013 10:42
Large richie mccaw crusaders Large richiemccawcrusaderstraining

Richie McCaw's sabbatical has made him hungrier than ever to make the most of the end of his career, starting against the Chiefs on Saturday.

Richie McCaw's rugby sabbatical has made him hungrier than ever to make the most of the end of his career, starting against the Chiefs on Saturday.

The All Blacks captain took a break from rugby for the first half of this year in order to prolong his career at the top and returned to the fray when he came off the bench in the Crusaders' Super Rugby play-off victory over the Reds in Christchurch.

The decorated openside flank admitted that after spending six months on the sidelines he is looking forward to getting back out there again.

He told Fairfax NZ News: "I was pretty nervous today turning up, and there was just an excitement about getting out on the field. That's the way rugby should be.

"I don't think it had disappeared, but certainly today reminded me why I do it and when you see the boys running round like that ... you don't get to play this game forever, and you want to make the most of every time you get out there.

"That becomes pretty evident when you sit and watch for a while," he explained.

However, he may have to wait a while longer before he starts a match as Crusaders coach Todd Blackadder intends to play him off the bench once again in the Crusaders' Super Rugby semifinal against the Chiefs in Hamilton this weekend.

Blackadder explained that he does not want to rush McCaw back into the starting line-up, especially with Matt Todd showing such good form at openside flank for the Crusaders lately.

"That was never part of our thinking to start with. I say that because he's only just getting his game-time and minutes up and it would be a huge step to go into a game like this.

"Richie's an outstanding player but it just wouldn't be right. That's no disrespect to anyone but it is just the right thing to do," he said.

McCaw himself admitted that following the Crusaders' demolition of the Reds last week, breaking into the team is quite a tough ask.

"It might be a bit tough, mightn't it. To be honest I'm just happy to be given a shot to have a run round. I'll hope for the best next week, but the boys are going good," he said.

He added that after falling short in the knock-out stages of the competition for the last few years, the Crusaders are desperate to go all the way and make it an eighth title this year.

"A lot of the boys have been in this situation the last couple of years and come up short and it would be pretty disappointing to get this far again and not put our best performance out there.

"There will be four teams now all thinking that same thing, and it comes down to the guys who can put it out there. We've got to be hungry and if we can prepare like we did this week and put a performance out there it's going take a good team to match that," he said.

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FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Fri, 26 August 2016
Golden Lions v Boland 15h00 Johannesburg
Pumas v Griquas 17h10 Kimberley
Sat, 27 August 2016
New Zealand v Australia 07h35 Wellington
EP Kings v Western Province 14h00 Port Elizabeth
Sharks v Blue Bulls 16h10 Durban
Argentina v South Africa 17h40 Salta
RESULT SCORE
Sat, 20 August 2016
South Africa v Argentina 30 | 23
Golden Lions v Griquas 24 | 30
Australia v New Zealand 8 | 42
Fri, 19 August 2016
Blue Bulls v EP Kings 49 | 35
Western Province v Free State Cheetahs 25 | 32
Boland v Sharks 20 | 41
Sat, 13 August 2016
Free State Cheetahs v Blue Bulls 43 | 20
Golden Lions v Pumas 68 | 26
Fri, 12 August 2016
Sharks v Griquas 46 | 24
EP Kings v Boland 10 | 28
Sat, 06 August 2016
Boland v Free State Cheetahs 16 | 44
Hurricanes v Lions 20 | 3
Fri, 05 August 2016
Pumas v Sharks 10 | 33
Blue Bulls v Western Province 45 | 26
Sat, 30 July 2016
Lions v Highlanders 42 | 30
SUPER RUGBY
MORE LOGS
Pool AU
Team P W D L Pts
Brumbies 15 10 0 5 43
Waratahs 15 8 0 7 40
Rebels 15 7 0 8 31
Reds 15 3 1 11 17
Force 15 2 0 13 13
Pool NZ
Team P W D L Pts
Hurricanes 15 11 0 4 53
Highlanders 15 11 0 4 52
Chiefs 15 11 0 4 51
Crusaders 15 11 0 4 50
Blues 15 8 1 6 39
Pool SA1
Team P W D L Pts
Stormers 15 10 1 4 51
Bulls 15 9 1 5 42
Cheetahs 15 4 0 11 21
Sunwolves 15 1 1 13 9
Pool SA2
Team P W D L Pts
Lions 14 11 0 3 52
Sharks 15 9 1 5 43
Jaguares 14 3 0 11 18
Kings 15 2 0 13 9