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All Blacks captain again to be outside the Crusaders starting team

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James Mortimer     25 Jul 2013     Getty Images

Indeed, it has become obvious that the reintegration of Richie McCaw to rugby, and to a smaller extent the Crusaders, is not a crucial part of the grand strategy to bring an eighth Super Rugby title to Christchurch, and the services of the three-time player of the year will again coming off the pine.

“That (rushing McCaw back into the run on side) was never part of our thinking to start with,” Blackadder said,.

“I say that because he's only just getting his game-time and minutes up and it would be a huge step to go into a game like this (the semi-final). Richie's an outstanding player but it just wouldn't be right. That's no disrespect to anyone but it is just the right thing to do.”

McCaw, who has come back after seven months outside of the game, told stuff.co.nz that it felt good to be back, stating before suiting up for action for Christchurch RFC earlier this month that he was beginning to get itchy feet again.

“There was just an excitement about getting out on the field. That's the way rugby should be,” the 116-Test flanker said.

“I don't think it (excitement) disappeared.”

“You don't get to play this game forever, and you want to make the most of every time you get out there. That becomes pretty evident when you sit and watch for a while.”