Two All Blacks legends will go head-to-head in the final of World Rugby’s fan-voted player of the decade award.
Former first-five Dan Carter and ex-captain Richie McCaw secured their berths in the final voting round of the knockout bracket after beating out fellow All Blacks Beauden Barrett and Kieran Read in the semi-finals of the online competition.
It’s a match-up which has the potential to go down to the wire given the standing both players have within the rugby fraternity.
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After having twice been named world player of the year this decade, some may consider Carter to have the edge over his old skipper.
The 37-year-old Kobelco Steelers playmaker also picked up two Rugby World Cup winners’ medals in 2011 and 2015, and finished his international career with a world record 1598 points from 112 test matches.
However, McCaw led the All Blacks to both of their World Cup titles over the last 10 years, becoming the first person in history to captain his nation to two international crowns.
The 38-year-old, who claimed his third world player of the year award in 2010 and was recently inducted into the World Rugby Hall of Fame, signed off from the All Blacks with a world record 148 test appearances to his name, with many of those caps coming while he was captain.
In the lead-up to his qualification of the final for World Rugby’s social media competition, Carter had to fight off the challenges of Barrett, England star Owen Farrell and New Zealand halfback Aaron Smith.
McCaw, meanwhile, managed to get past the threats posed by Read, former Italy captain Sergio Parisse and Major League Rugby-bound prop Tendai Mtawarira.
While it remains to be seen who will take out the title, one thing is certain – the player of the decade for the 2010s will be from New Zealand.
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