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All Blacks captain McCaw to miss 2013 Super Rugby

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Richie McCaw will miss Super Rugby and June internationals in 2013.

Richie McCaw will miss Super Rugby and June internationals in 2013. Photo: Reuters

All Blacks captain Richie McCaw is to take an extended break from rugby, sitting out next year's Super 15 championship and the June Tests against France, Crusaders officials confirmed on Sunday.

The talismanic openside flanker and three-times IRB player of the year is to enact the six-month sabbatical clause in his contract in the hope it will help extend his playing days through to the next World Cup in 2015.

"It is definitely going to happen," Todd Blackadder, the coach of McCaw's Crusaders Super 15 side, told the Sunday Star-Times.

"Richie is going to take a sabbatical. He will probably be available after June. He won't be available for the Tests or Super Rugby, so he's going to get a good break."

The 31-year-old McCaw will play in the All Blacks remaining Rugby Championship matches against Argentina and South Africa over the next two weeks and the end-of-year tour to Europe before taking to the sidelines.

"He's going to see the season out with the All Blacks, then have a break. It will freshen him up and he'll come back and be good for the next couple of years," Blackadder said.

All Blacks coach Steve Hansen also said he was in favour of McCaw having a break.

"If we want to get him through to the next World Cup, then it would be a good idea if he uses it at some point," he said before the team left for Argentina on Saturday night.

McCaw will be the second All Black to take a sabbatical, an option on offer to leading players in an attempt to keep them in New Zealand instead of chasing lucrative contracts overseas. Fly-half Dan Carter took extended leave in 2008.

All Blacks backrower Kieran Read has been confirmed as the Crusaders captain for next year and has also been tipped as a future leader of the All Blacks.

AFP

Rugby Internationals 2014

Round 1
Sat, 07 JunTimes shown AEST
SAM 18 vs TGA 18 Report Stats
FJI 25 vs ITA 14 Report Stats
NZL 20 vs ENG 15 Report Stats
AUS 50 vs FRA 23 Report Stats
Sun, 08 JunTimes shown AEST
RSA 47 vs WXV 13 Report Stats
ARG 17 vs IRE 29 Report Stats
USA 6 vs SCO 24 Report Stats
CAN 25 vs JPN 34 Report Stats
View All Fixtures
Round 2
Sat, 14 JunTimes shown AEST
SAM 15 vs ITA Report Stats
FJI 45 vs TGA 17 Report Stats
NZL 28 vs ENG 27 Report Stats
AUS 6 vs FRA Report Stats
Sun, 15 JunTimes shown AEST
RSA 38 vs WAL 16 Report Stats
CAN 17 vs SCO 19 Report Stats
ARG 17 vs IRE 23 Report Stats
USA 29 vs JPN 37 Report Stats
View All Fixtures
Round 3
Sat, 21 JunTimes shown AEST
ARG 19 vs SCO 21 Report Stats
FJI 13 vs SAM 18 Report Stats
JPN 26 vs ITA 23 Report Stats
AUS 39 vs FRA 13 Stats
NZL 36 vs ENG 13 Report Stats
Sun, 22 JunTimes shown AEST
RSA 31 vs WAL 30 Report Stats
USA 38 vs CAN 35 Report Stats
View All Fixtures
Round 4
Sun, 29 JunTimes shown AEST
RSA 55 vs SCO 6 Report Stats
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Round 5
Sun, 02 NovTimes shown AEDT
BAR 36 vs AUS 40 Report Stats
USA 6 vs NZL 74 Report Stats
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Round 6
Sun, 09 NovTimes shown AEDT
ITA 24 vs SAM 13 Report Stats
ENG 21 vs NZL 24 Report Stats
WAL 28 vs AUS 33 Report Stats
FRA 40 vs FJI 14 Report Stats
IRE 29 vs RSA 15 Report Stats
SCO 41 vs ARG 31 Report Stats
View All Fixtures
Round 7
Sun, 16 NovTimes shown AEDT
ITA 18 vs ARG 20 Report Stats
ENG 28 vs RSA 31 Report Stats
WAL 17 vs FJI 13 Report Stats
SCO 16 vs NZL 24 Report Stats
FRA 29 vs AUS 26 Report Stats
Mon, 17 NovTimes shown AEDT
IRE 49 vs GEO 7 Report Stats
View All Fixtures
Round 8
Sun, 23 NovTimes shown AEDT
ITA 6 vs RSA 22 Report Stats
SCO 37 vs TGA 12 Report Stats
IRE 26 vs AUS 23 Report Stats
WAL 16 vs NZL 34 Report Stats
ENG 28 vs SAM 9 Report Stats
FRA 13 vs ARG 18 Report Stats
View All Fixtures
Round 9
Sun, 30 NovTimes shown AEDT
ENG 26 vs AUS 17 Report Stats
WAL 12 vs RSA 6 Report Stats
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