New Zealand play down McCaw concerns
October 12, 2011
Matt Todd at training on Wednesday © Getty Images
Matt Todd was a surprise face at training for the All Blacks on Wednesday amid concerns over Richie McCaw's fitness.
McCaw is carrying a foot injury which forced him to miss two of the All Blacks' pool matches and limited his participation in training. Todd had trained with the New Zealand squad ahead of their pool game against France, and he joined a number of the Blues Super Rugby squad in an opposed session today.
International Rugby Board regulations state players not in the official 30-man World Cup squads cannot train with the team, only against them. However, in a move to play down concerns over the skipper's fitness - 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.
Hosts New Zealand face Australia in the World Cup semi-finals on Sunday.
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
The Scotland coach enters his first Six Nations with at least one familiar face to look to for inspiration - Ireland's Joe Schmidt. He chats to Tom Hamilton
Italy coach Jacques Brunel spoke to ESPN ahead of his final season as Italy coach and tells of his desire to experiment and evolve
"There's no bull with me, I just tell it straight." Tom Hamilton talks to Warren Gatland in an exclusive interview
With the retirement of Adam Jones, Welsh rugby says goodbye to a great player and one of its biggest personalities too, writes Tom Hamilton