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Nigel Owens makes not straight comment

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

WIN a signed copy of All Black captain Richie McCaw's autobiography

This year we launched the All Blacks Channel, featuring and archiving latest updates and news from the World Champions, in association with AIG. To acknowledge their great year, we have two copies of The Real McCaw: The Autobiography to give away.

It's been a huge year for Richie McCaw and the All Blacks, after having won each of their 14 matches in 2013. McCaw was at the forefront, and despite a working with a body that has suffered just about every injury possible, the great man showed exactly why he is held in such high regard.

In his brutally honest autobiography McCaw discusses the family life that defined his character, learning to play the game on the farm and being inspired to fly gliders his his war-hero grandfather.

The 124 capped All Black has set the standard for all professional players. A natural leader of men both on and off the pitch, his autobiography gives great insight into what it's like on the front line. 

"Better on one leg during the Rugby World Cup than most players on two" - Pack Ackford 

The Real McCaw: The Autobiography by Richie McCaw is available now

WIN A SIGNED COPY OF THE REAL MCCAW
We have a few ways you can enter:

1 - Follow @Rugbydump and tweet: "I've just entered to win Richie McCaw's autobiography! http://onrugbydu.mp/RealMcCaw @rugbydump"

2 - LIKE our Facebook post

3 - Leave a comment below discussing what makes McCaw one of the best

Entries close Thursday 26 December 2013. Only one entry per person per method. Good luck!

Posted at 12:24 pm | 120 comments

Posted in All Blacks, Competition

Viewing 120 comments

bluebulls08 December 11, 2013 12:37 pm

The best flanker; period. Known, but never seen (by referees).

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Jakeo1993 December 11, 2013 12:38 pm

The class around the breakdown and he surely must have some of the best individual turnover stats in international rugby. Class above the rest. Legend.

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KiwiRedDevil December 11, 2013 12:38 pm

Um "Entries close Thursday 26 October 2013." - I'm guessing the date's wrong.

BTW, it's a great read.

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MQ December 11, 2013 12:38 pm

The smart and sneaky one!

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Dave Jones December 11, 2013 12:38 pm

His amazing ability to bend the rules at ruck time.

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Feenz December 11, 2013 12:39 pm

One of, if not the greatest back rower in the sport's history! Coupled with his 100+ caps for the All Blacks - unbeatable.

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Pedro Azevedo December 11, 2013 12:39 pm

Richie McCaw defines rubgy: every inch counts, no matter when, no matter what.

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Whiskas December 11, 2013 12:40 pm

Richie's has redefined everything about how a forward should play. Every time they change the rules he adapts and finds a new way to bend them.

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Laurie December 11, 2013 12:43 pm

Best flanker in the world for a number of years. Player of dreams!

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aj_2405 December 11, 2013 12:45 pm

A very smart player, who always leads by example with his heart, brain and body.

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irwan December 11, 2013 12:45 pm

He was born as a natural born baby like us..but he changed the path of his life to be the best from the rest. He deserved immortality

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irwan December 11, 2013 12:45 pm

He was born as a natural born baby like us..but he changed the path of his life to be the best from the rest. He deserved immortality

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OllyRugby December 11, 2013 12:49 pm

he is arguably the best flanker in the world, he has a lot of courage, spirit and has earned his way to the top, that's what makes him to me the best flanker in the world and a true legend.

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Saffie December 11, 2013 12:50 pm

He is the most intelligent rugby player out, he will play on the laws until the ref tells him to stop.....he is just one of the best ever!

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IndianaFruitcake December 11, 2013 12:50 pm

As we saw in the Ireland game that's recently passed, He's an inspiring player who brings class and professionalism to the game. As a captain he brought near defeat into a win. He's a legend that will be recognised for all time.

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Ken December 11, 2013 12:50 pm

Natural leader, determined to amend his mistakes each game. Takes pride in match preparation and an honest pro

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Matthew Slade December 11, 2013 12:51 pm

He is immortal

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MathiasAC December 11, 2013 12:52 pm

Still the best even without playing for about a year ! An amazing leadership, that will push everyone out of their own limits !

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mel_b December 11, 2013 12:54 pm

His ability to continually change the way he plays, adapt to referees and to changing game plans to remain the best player in his position in the world!

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Joaquin December 11, 2013 1:02 pm

The one leader, the best, he has the great ability to lead, but more importantly to influence the team to achieve its objective

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declan breen December 11, 2013 1:03 pm

cause hes better than the referee !!!!!!!!!!!

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Lulu Law December 11, 2013 1:03 pm

Passion, strenghth, dedication and flair combined into one awe-inspiring player!

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Derek December 11, 2013 1:08 pm

Gives 110% in every game
He's just a winner right to the end
Great inspiration for young rugby plAyers

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marc December 11, 2013 1:13 pm

Richie is the best simply because he never cheats and is never offside.........

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Bam December 11, 2013 1:13 pm

Except for the Piet van Zyl incident, have you ever seen Richie McCaw through a punch or point a finger on the field. His actions talk the loudest - and that pretty much sums it up!

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cribben98 December 11, 2013 1:15 pm

hes only got one yellow card in 100 pus caps and that just for his country, never mind his countless caps for his club. hes a phenomenal player.

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Canadian content December 13, 2013 12:01 am

Yeah but he deserved plenty that he didn't get called for. Kinda like admiring a corrupt politician for all of the money he got away with swindling.

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Vic December 11, 2013 1:15 pm

Richie McCaw is omnipresent.

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Tom December 11, 2013 1:17 pm

His leadership, his ability to control the breakdown and his sheer class as a player. He is also the only player able to make the rugby world respect the All Blacks even more than before.

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Chris_batera December 11, 2013 1:20 pm

McCaw is a kiwi monster of rugby!

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ahmed juan December 11, 2013 1:23 pm

always first to arrivals..as going gets tough he keep it through thick and thin..to rise on all occasion makes him a warrior on his own right..and with his very body on the line

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Max December 11, 2013 1:26 pm

courage, tenacity, love for his team. he never gives up!

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grubber December 11, 2013 1:26 pm

exceptional workrate and the ability to toe the line to the absolute furthest point he can get away with.

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Stefan December 11, 2013 1:26 pm

The most craftful master of pushing boundaries and getting results.

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Nick December 11, 2013 1:27 pm

Richie is the best because of his longevity at the helm of the greatest rugby nation ever, Overall though its his performances and the fact he leads from the front and can still be as hungry as ever despite all the accolades and trophies to win is what makes him the best!!! He wears his heart on his sleeve and everything he does is for the best of the team not for himself.

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RobJonesDude December 11, 2013 1:35 pm

Success in a career can be often, but to do so with such longevity and international win rate is legendary

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Jen December 11, 2013 1:40 pm

Incredible dedication and passion, combined with a great talent for reading the game, his opponents and the ref.

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Alan December 11, 2013 1:47 pm

Just a monster!

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Ryan December 11, 2013 1:52 pm

Never say die attitude and dedication to the cause

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standapro December 11, 2013 1:53 pm

Cause he plays flanker!

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Eddie-g December 11, 2013 1:59 pm

So, from a Bok fan, and an open-side flank back when I played, three reasons why this guy stands apart:

1. 3 times IRB player of the year, nominated a further 5 times since 2002.
2. In any game against the ABs, the first question you ask is who is up against McCaw. Is there someone who can compete with him? Because if not, there's only going to be one result.
3. Never complains about the treatment he gets from officials or opponents. He gets plenty, good and bad, but you'd never know it.

For longevity at the top of the game, there's never been anyone better. And for most of his career, he's been right at the very top. Remarkable bloke.

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Canadian content December 13, 2013 12:02 am

BOD should have had it in 2009. Don't know why he got it then.

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joeythelemur December 16, 2013 8:49 pm

Hey Canuck, are you going to contribute to the conversation or just go on being a tosser?

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Gavin Douglas December 11, 2013 1:59 pm

Ritchie McCaw is someone who everyone can look up to. He is a charismatic leader and, with his fantastic work rate, he understands how to win.

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Bernardo Faria December 11, 2013 2:02 pm

He can lead a nation without saying a word. He simply gives the example, caring for each and every inch on the pitch!

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crmno8 December 11, 2013 2:07 pm

He knows the rules as well as if not better than most referees, and he does the basics well.

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iLegion27 December 11, 2013 2:13 pm

He looks for work, as simple as that. The Loose forwards have to be all over the field, actively engaging in the defense or offense.

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Jon December 11, 2013 2:19 pm

the bounce!

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munster_jimmy December 11, 2013 2:23 pm

The person who single handedly taught young rugby players that praise will be heaped on you if you can get away with cheating. He made breaking the rules an acceptable thing to do ......because he was 'the best at reading the ref'.
No doubt a great player, pity he had to break the rules to get to the level he is.

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Roadpig December 12, 2013 7:34 am

If I might interpret your post for the benefit of the rugby-loving public: "I don't know the rules, I don't know anything about rugby, and I don't like Richie McCaw because his team keeps beating my team. Its not fair, and he must be a cheat."

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Computer says no December 12, 2013 10:04 am

Sorry going to have to disagree here. Richie McCaw really has refined the art of "being a cheat". If you followed the Rugby rules to a tee, he'd be penalized or sin binned in the majority of his matches.

Unfortunately referees are only human (this year was an exceptional example), and he's twisted them around his finger.

And it's not about hating the NZ team. I admire Dan Carter, which I think is one of the best fly halves of all time. And Kieran Reed's ball skills are unmatched at present. In far too many instances that I see Richie do something positive for his team, it's illegally so. Hence Richie McCheaty I don't hold in high esteem.

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munster_jimmy December 13, 2013 6:39 am

It's odd how New Zealanders seem to put up this facade of being nice but as soon as you mention a different opinion, they get down right nasty and mock you. Read any comments regarding the NZ rugby team and you'll see it. Just because you have the best rugby team in the world doesn't make you the know it alls that their fans think you are. But the dumb rugby-loving public (everyone outside of NZ ) appreciates you interpreting what we are trying to say.

Totally agree@Computersaysno, so much respect for Read and Carter. Unfortunately not the same for MCcaw because the reality is he could have been almost as good without having to constantly break the rules.

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whiteafrican December 13, 2013 4:59 pm

The problem is this: If you look hard enough a replay of a ruck situation at test level, you could probably find a reason to award a penalty to one side or the other on most occasions. But the Refs don't do that because it would ruin rugby as a spectacle. Nobody wants a stop-start game. Referees are under a tension between applying all of the rules and having a stop-start game. The same issue arises in lots of other sports (e.g. in football, look at all the shirt-tugging that goes on before a corner is taken - on the strict letter of the law, a ref could give about 10 penalties per match, but they don't because it would ruin the game).

So, in rugby, the art of being a great loose forward is understanding the tension that the ref is under, knowing exactly what will get you penalised, and being in the right places, with the right body position at the right time. That is what McCaw is so good at. He reads the game and he adapts his style of play to fit the situation. Is he sometimes on the ragged edge of what's acceptable? Of course - if he wasn't he wouldn't be doing his job.

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joeythelemur December 16, 2013 8:54 pm

So in the process of trying to ping McCaw, you've jumped right ahead and insulted an entire country. Well done! I'm sure all those nice Kiwis are happy for you to point out their "facade."

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Abbas December 11, 2013 2:30 pm

Mccaw is surely one of the best openside flankers i have seen.Not only due to his athletic abilities and "power of anticipation and adaptability" shall we call it but also a few other factors such as the respect he has for the game i dont recall a time where he threw a punch at another player on the rugby field It is also in the influence he had on the all balcks graham henry stated that they wouldnt have won the 2011 finals without him. Also his devotion to the all blacks he played the 2011 finals with a break in the long bone of his left foot. This is a clear sign of his devotion and role as captain and role model for the all blacks because it s such models that inspire you to give your best and become world champions.
And in such he deserve to be called the best

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alayafrench December 11, 2013 2:32 pm

Richie is a class act and the epitome of good sportsmanship. He is an amazing flanker and is full of heart. Plus he is gorgeous to boot!

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siddharth lolayekar December 11, 2013 2:41 pm

well no doubt one of the best flankers...
only player to be awarded IRB player of the year on 3 occasions..
but the reason i think hes the best is because he leads his life and the team by example.. which i believe is a major push to all..

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Ravi December 11, 2013 2:43 pm

Consistency and courage. ... Great qualities displayed by exceptional Mccaw

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Martin December 11, 2013 3:28 pm

His leadership against Ireland in the Autumn Internationals and on other occasions as well makes him one of the greatest leaders of any sports team in the world ever.

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James Thomas December 11, 2013 3:31 pm

The iconic figure behind the greatest rugby team in the game's history, and currently the most dominant team in the world of sport. McCaw has always remained humble, despite his unrivaled success. He's always played rugby on the very edge of legality, and is a total professional in the way he conducts himself on and off the field. Overall, a true rugby legend.

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Maz December 11, 2013 3:39 pm

Very versatile and has a lot of Rugby IQ

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nmbowser December 11, 2013 4:15 pm

A fantastic flanker and a GREAT leader. Someone that everyone, regardless of position played can learn from

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tdrsea December 11, 2013 4:22 pm

His ability to play on the wrong side of the law without being called up on it!

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Dan December 11, 2013 4:28 pm

Natural born killer in rugby terms. The embodiment of the kiwi guile in international rugby.

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10stonenumber10 December 11, 2013 4:31 pm

It is only my theory, but there is one reason, and one reason alone why Richie McCaw can live on the other side of the Offside line. Remember that NZ vs SA game where the disgraceful Bok fan rushed the ref? As soon as he touched the ref Richie was off and onto him, from the video you can see him pop a dig or two... no. 5 on Top Villains http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VArI9ikbFIY

View Video

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victor December 11, 2013 4:46 pm

Hello ,richie
For the french guy who cooke "chiken" for you ,with Akli in CHC .
best regard

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GameBoy December 11, 2013 5:05 pm

Hard worker, put his body on the line for his team, and leadership. I also like when he poaches for ball so quickly.

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luatua December 11, 2013 5:59 pm

so good in jackling, just incredible

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kocherb December 11, 2013 5:59 pm

He has such great vision of the game. He's Jedi-like, in that he can see things before they happen. Great vision. Just like Gretzky had :)

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Pipo December 11, 2013 6:07 pm

124 test matches. Captain of a RWC winning team. Captain of a team unbeaten in a whole year (first team to do so in the professional era). An All Black. What else is there to discuss? He is obviously among the best!

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rob December 11, 2013 6:20 pm

by being an inspiring nuisance on the field

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ChiefyB117 December 11, 2013 6:54 pm

He's the best flanker in the world, playing for the best (ranked) team in the world. He's absolutely everywhere on the pitch and is always at the top of his game

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wrightbkk December 11, 2013 7:00 pm

Plays so close to the edge that if there were a precipice he'd fall in! but he doesn't - the mark of a true legend......

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geert December 11, 2013 7:30 pm

No metter what you hear about him. To old, injury bla, bla bla, bla....
When he plays it's alway's with 100% comittement to the sport!
Sir Richie, "See it, to believe it"

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ThyShallbemine123 December 11, 2013 8:01 pm

Always gets in over the top in rucks to win penalties. He is also very fast off the back of a scrum. He does the job that all flankers should do and he does it very well. Definetly one of the worlds best flankers and all round players!!

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yrjrld December 11, 2013 8:02 pm

does his job right

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Doogs December 11, 2013 9:23 pm

All Guts no Glory! True Grit n a whole lota passion!

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Joseph Liam December 11, 2013 9:29 pm

His ability to in the scrum and other set pieces to dominate play is amazing. Will always be a fan.

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docrugby December 11, 2013 9:50 pm

Because whether you like him or not every team would want him in their side.A consumate professional,an inspiring leader and a superb exponent of the art of being an open side flanker.The very best.

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docrugby December 11, 2013 9:52 pm

I obviously should have added an apostrophe after 'not'.Haha...a freudian slip..definitely not!

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Rob H December 11, 2013 10:38 pm

longevity at the top of the game..a great ambassador ..:)

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Manny C December 11, 2013 10:43 pm

True leadership is shown through example. There is no better example of leadership than Richie McCaw. True...Humble...and Fierce.

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Kane December 11, 2013 10:46 pm

His ability to constantly evolve his game to stay ahead of the chasing pack

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Rasta December 11, 2013 11:07 pm

His ability to read the game, the referees and the players (Opposition and teammates) better than most.

Plus, he's a human work horse.
Richie McCaw can piss his name in concrete

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James December 11, 2013 11:51 pm

should make good kindling for my fireplace

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David December 12, 2013 12:31 am

McCaw never stops. He is a leader, and you can tell by watching him that he truly LOVES rugby.

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Sam December 12, 2013 4:06 am

he's been capped over 100 times for a very very successful team and he hasn't yet been sucked into any controversy off the field.

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mowgli December 12, 2013 6:37 am

his insanely big motor.

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Hermann Dill December 12, 2013 7:07 am

McCaw = blood, toil, tears, and sweat.

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A Wheeler December 12, 2013 12:28 pm

Richie is the best so far. Best flanker, best Captain, best player, best team mate. Simply the best there has been. Legendary.

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jk December 12, 2013 1:50 pm

what makes any all black? - an indomitable will

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Rhys Edwards December 12, 2013 7:27 pm

Everytime the laws, not rules, change he changes and adapts to still be the most ruthless player at the breakdown. Dynamic

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JMG December 12, 2013 10:21 pm

One accolade that is underused when describing him is humility. One could get a big head when told all the time how good you are, but I have never seen or heard any evidence of him blowing his own horn, he will always compliment the team effort and never draw it back upon himself. When one remains humble, one will inherit good things. He has indeed done that.

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Joe Swatzell December 13, 2013 12:12 am

I can only speak of his "on pitch" persona, but he always seem to be in the right place, both offensively and defensively. I have never seen him "take time off" during any phase. His effort to the team goal is relentless.

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IMONTALVO December 13, 2013 3:21 am

Richie McCaw is simply the best because he understands that rugby is a collective game, and that one's personal interest come on a far distant place from the team's own.
He leads by example and never takes a step back, never ask somebody what he's not willing to do himself. He's proud and acknowledges the Allblack legacy like no other.

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Feeqo December 13, 2013 11:40 am

Being such an inspirational figure in the rugby world. A champion on and off the field and it is amazing that he is so humble despite being so well known and popular. No words can describe how awesome he is and how ridiculously talented he is. Big fan of him and his work and will love to win a signed autobiography of his.

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fabruno December 13, 2013 11:47 am

What makes richie mccaw the best? simple said but few can do.... COMMITMENT....

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Kevin Riley December 13, 2013 4:57 pm

Richie McCAw the greatest flanker and leader of his generation. A great leader and true example of how the game of rugby should be played, a true inspiration too all up and coming rugby players a true inspiration. What he has achieved with in the rugby world is a true testament to his leadership, skill,knowledge, respect and love of the greatest sport, Rugby.

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mervyn knight December 13, 2013 8:18 pm

simple the willingness to never give up and always fight till the end!!!!!!!!!

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Jan December 14, 2013 1:24 pm

THE Iron man

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Andrew Coughlan December 14, 2013 2:53 pm

Unbelievable at the break down...

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DrG December 14, 2013 6:47 pm

His ability (and the AB's ability) to use the blackness of the jersey to blind the referees as to what goes on in a game allowing the AB's to get away with murder at the breakdown...

Jokes - or truths - aside, McCaw plays to his strengths and his ability to adapt during a game and play to the referee is an amazing skill. All teams "try things" with the referee to see what they can get away with and McCaw is one that knows how to tiptoe that penalty line after he has found out where it is. Many times I have seen other flankers "try things", get penalised and then continue to do them and flap about being penalised again.

McCaws general work rate and hunger is also brilliant. A star player and deservedly in almost everyones World XV.

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DrG December 15, 2013 12:34 pm

Actually as someone said above, his humility is top class. I have seen some of the other players having a joke about it and in some ways seeming a bit big headed, but regardless of who the opposition is, McCaw always seems to have the utmost respect (in front of the camera at least). They could thrash a team like Italy and he'd still have something positive to say about them.

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McButs December 14, 2013 7:55 pm

because stone cold said so

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TJ December 15, 2013 1:16 pm

Say what you like.. 124 tests and the fact that everyone wishes they could get away with Richie's style of play. He has defined backrow play for all time.

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EChiappero December 16, 2013 12:11 am

The lider of the best team in the world and one of the most successful in history. That speaks it better than anything else.

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joeythelemur December 16, 2013 9:15 pm

Saw what you like about playing on the edge of the law, but Richie is one of the greatest ever. Every side would love to have him and it's amazing how well he has withstood the demands of such a punishing position.

The three qualities I think of in RM:

1. Leadership - The ABs, Crusaders, and Canterbury give their all for this guy, and he earns that respect by his effort.
2. Humility/Respect - I'm glad this was mentioned by others. He has a genuine respect for his mates and his opponents, as well as the players that have come before him. Jean DeVilliers is another guy in this vein.
3. Drive - Always looking to get better, find an edge over his opponent, never giving up, and yes, getting away with as much as he can to help his team win. It's rare to see this level of commitment and he has channelled it brilliantly through his career.

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Greg Reidy December 17, 2013 12:17 pm

Richie McCaw is by a long shot the finest openside in the world. His presence at the breakdown is immense! hes a lways there to slow down the ball and make hard work dor the opposition. His carrys and tackles are also incredibly strong! He can form a relationship with any referee and keep the referee happy throughout the entire game. His professionalism is first rate in that he is constantly striving to be the best and get better and be quite modest about it. for any player who plays around him he seems to inspire them and motivate those around him. Truly the finest openside flanker in the world!

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Poppy Daisy December 17, 2013 7:40 pm

"He is the best cos my daddy says he is best" - Poppy and Daisy (both aged 3)

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oli bishop December 18, 2013 10:43 pm

quite simply he does not know when he is beat, and has the ability to inspire a team and a nation with his presence

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Wolonel December 19, 2013 3:52 pm

If it wasn't for Richie, this AB side wouldn't have won the world cup and wouldn't have dominated in his time. It's his close-in work that he has reinvented really, not so much his link no.7 play. It just goes to show what direction the game has gone, and he must get all the credit for taking it this way. The greatest competitor we've ever seen?

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davllo December 19, 2013 6:22 pm

A gentleman with attitude. Great!!!! Just great!

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justburg December 20, 2013 4:54 am

Richie-

While there may be a few people who will fight the claim of greatest open side to play the game. I think it's safe to say that as of now Richie has earned the title.
The man is The Description of what it takes to be a great rugby player. Leave everything on the field. Richie is a fantastic icon for what a rugby player should be off the field. Provides good will to man, volunteers to fantastic causes, and helped out during all of the earthquakes in NZ.
For a man to out play everyone with a broken foot makes him an icon of the nation and is unbelievable. In all honestly, how many men on this planet can you think of who can deal with that pain for love of country, passion for the game, and love of the team? Everyone knows that if it were you, you would have thrown in the towel and that wouldn't have been a bad option. The fact that the Stadium of a Nation was there brought out the best in a man who had nothing he needed to prove, except that without a World Cup he wouldn't be happy. Sam Cane, you are fantastic!! But eat the shoes you are trying to fill are large and too large for you or anyone to fill for a long time to come

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REDFEG December 24, 2013 9:02 am

Because he has volcanic lava for blood.

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Ginette December 25, 2013 8:42 pm

Best flanker in the world! Played the semi and final World Cup 2011 games with a broken ankle so thy he wouldn't let his team down. Didn't attend the royal weds ing so that he could continue to train with the team. Turned down knighthood so thy he was not seen superior to his team mates. Takes responsibility of his team for both defeats and wins. 100 caps and only 1 yellow card!.... Need I say more?

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David Ayre January 02, 2014 11:24 pm

Before going to bed at night, Schalk Burger looks under his bed for Richie McCaw

Some people can piss their name in the snow. Richie McCaw can piss his name in concrete

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