In Dublin, play it again, Sam

Ir­ish eyes won’t be smil­ing at thought of Cane in op­po­si­tion line-up

Weekend Argus (Saturday Edition) - - SPORT -

then I will hope to play to that level again against the Ir­ish.”

Cane, who had an out­stand­ing 2011 Un­der-20 world cham­pi­onship, scor­ing a hat-trick of tries in one game, said the tour had given him a dif­fer­ent insight into the set-up as he had been named on the elite lead­er­ship group along with vastly more ex­pe­ri­enced play­ers such as cap­tain Richie McCaw and Carter.

“It has al­lowed me to work re­ally closely with the coaches and it has been in­ter­est­ing for me to see be­hind the scenes,” he said.

“It hasn’t changed the way I’ve ap­proached the tour but the ad­di­tional re­spon­si­bil­ity is some­thing I’ve en­joyed.

“I’ve learnt off four of the most capped play­ers in All Blacks his­tory.”

His fel­low Un­der-20 world cham­pi­onship win­ning team­mate Charles Pi­u­tau has in con­trast started both the Tests on this tour (scor­ing a try in the 26-19 win over France and then switch­ing wings for the 30-22 vic­tory over Eng­land), and he says that the ex­pe­ri­ence has been a huge learn­ing curve for him.

“Get­ting more game time has al­lowed me to learn all the time,” said the 21-year-old, who made his Test de­but against France in New Zealand this year.

“The wel­come given by the se­nior play­ers has played a huge part in how I’ve blended into this team. I grew up watch­ing Richie and Dan play­ing rugby, they were like gods to me.

“How­ever, you couldn’t meet two more down-to-earth guys.”

Pi­u­tau said that he hadn’t found the tran­si­tion from full­back to wing a prob­lem and as­sis­tant coach Ian Fos­ter said he had ful­filled the role well, though he con­ceded he was still a work in progress.

“He’s got a short at­ten­tion-span (so) for the two Tests on the tour so far we switched him from the right side to the left!” he said.

“He’s dealt with it well. He’s a very level-headed young man. He’s also done his job off the park as well.

“He’s pretty good but he has got stuff to work on like the last match showed up things such as his kick and chase. He’s a work in progress.

“We are only talk­ing about sand­pa­per; that is, small im­prove­ments.” – Sapa-AFP NEW ZEALAND: Is­rael Dagg; Cory Jane, Ben Smith, Ma’a Nonu, Ju­lian Savea; Aaron Cru­den, Aaron Smith; Kieran Read, Richie McCaw (capt), Steven Lu­atua; Sam White­lock, Luke Ro­mano; Char­lie Fau­muina, An­drew Hore, Wy­att Crock­ett Re­place­ments: Dane Coles, Ben Franks, Owen Franks, Brodie Re­tal­lick, Sam Cane, TJ Per­e­nara, Beau­den Bar­rett, Ryan Crotty


CANE HE DO IT AGAIN? There’s no luck for the Ir­ish when they face New Zealand’s Sam Cane – in one Test he en­abled Dan Carter to drop a goal and clinch a win, and in the next he scored two tries in a 60-0 rout.

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