Cane-Savea: It's all about the team

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Lynn McConnell     21 Jun 2016     Getty Images

Speaking in Dunedin, where the team are preparing for the third Test on Saturday, Cane said the goal was to enjoy the chance you had whenever pulling on the All Blacks' jersey.


He and Savea had been getting along well together and had been doing work-ons with each other.

Assessing their differences Cane said Savea was probably more explosive than he was and thrived in ball carrying while Cane saw himself more defence orientated.

"As a rugby player you are aware of your own strengths and weaknesses and you are always trying to get better in the areas you're not while at the same time keeping your strengths your strengths," he said.

While everyone in the team was competing for a spot, what over-rode that was the team first and foremost.

"No matter who gets picked, who plays what or for how long, you know that it's being done for the better of the team and whether you like that or not you suck it up because it is a bloody good team to be part of," he said.
Cane said in the build-up to Saturday's Test there had been attention paid, as there always was, to the breakdown. That was the case before the last two matches and it was the same this week. In the review process they had highlighted a few different pictures and scenarios.

"The good thing about this team is you sort of only have to tell guys once, show them the right picture and they pick it up fairly quickly," he said.

His marker, Wales captain Sam Warburton, was always lurking and had been disruptive at the breakdown.

"He's obviously their leader so he gets through a fair bit of work. I've said it before, loose forwards can often only play as well as the team allows. When the tight five are going forward a loose forward becomes a lot more prominent in a game.

"The more we can dominate their boys up front the less of an impact you'll have," he said.

Warburton was likely to play his fourth game in 14 days in the third Test and that was worthy of respect because he hadn't played a lot of rugby before that due to injury.

Second five-eighths Ryan Crotty said it had been good to see newcomer to the side this year, centre Seta Tamanivalu get an opportunity at the weekend and really take it.

"I thought he came on and handled the arena of Test footy really well. He was calm out there, he did his job, had some great touches and it was good to see the preparation that we have done over the first two weeks paid dividends for when he got his opportunity."

Crotty said not having the shadow of Ma'a Nonu and Sonny Bill Williams hanging over selection and the preparation there was a lot more clarity about the moves, the game plan and where he was supposed to be.

"Preparation-wise you notice the difference rather than being a back-up but I guess you want that pressure on you to be able to go out there and do the job and help the team and help run things and really impact the performance," he said.