McCaw greatest exponent of the game
Off the long run
Although it is difficult to compare players of different eras, if there was any player that is able to truly challenge the legendary Colin Meads for the title of New Zealand's greatest player it is Richie McCaw.
Both were/are the best in the world at their position at the time they played, and the best in their position that NZ has produced (apologies to Michael Jones).
Both had/have the physicality and skills to dominate any opposition.
But the difference, and what marks Richie as truly the greatest, is his contribution in the two key areas that the modern game demands - strategy and expansive leadership.
His ability to think through the complexities of the game, both at the prematch planning phase and the gameplan delivery on the field, is unsurpassed.
This may be a by-product of the environment that Graham Henry and latterly Steve Hansen have created, and is surely an outcome of the learning curve he went through after the loss in the 2007 World Cup.
His overall influence on a game that he is participating is now unsurpassed - in his position play and as the captain. Richie is surely the greatest exponent of the game we have seen.
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