Belfast Telegraph

Sunday 31 August 2014

All Blacks play down McCaw concerns

Richie McCaw

New Zealand have played down fears over the fitness of captain Richie McCaw after Crusaders flanker Matt Todd appeared at training on Wednesday.

McCaw is carrying a foot injury which forced him to miss two of the All Blacks' pool matches and limited his participation in training.

But All Blacks manager Darren Shand confirmed, according to the New Zealand Rugby Union website, that Todd was not present in training as an imminent replacement for McCaw.

Todd had trained with the All Blacks ahead of their pool game against France, and he joined a number of the Blues Super Rugby squad in an opposed session on Wednesday.

International Rugby Board regulations state players not in the official 30-man World Cup squads cannot train with the team, only against them.

Hosts New Zealand face Australia in the World Cup semi-finals on Sunday.

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