Planet Rugby

Hansen backs Cane to shine

13th September 2013 07:05

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Sam Cane ABs training 2013

Raring to go: Sam Cane

All Blacks boss Steve Hansen is confident flanker Sam Cane is up to the task of replacing Richie McCaw against the Springboks on Saturday.

Cane has represented New Zealand in nine Tests but those matches were played against the less physical forwards of Ireland, Italy and France.

South Africa are renowned for their physicality and although Hansen admitted Cane faced a massive challenge he feels he can pass the test with flying colours.

"He's ready," said Hansen.

"He's been around the environment for quite some time now. He's a good athlete. Mentally he's able to put things into perspective and put things in the right places.

"It's not an easy job coming in behind a guy like McCaw because you're compared to him all the time."

Cane is keen to impress and said he won't try to change much of his natural game.

"It's a big challenge but I think it's important that I don't go out there and try to play Richie's game, I just need to go out there and play my own and be myself," he explained.

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