Sam Cane praised for touching sideline moment with James Slipper after losing to the Wallabies
Sam Cane has put everything into his first season of All Blacks captaincy, often coming off looking battered and bruised following his warriors efforts in the first four Bledisloe Cup tests.
More impressive has been the honourable way he was dealt with win, loss or draw has impressed fans with some even calling for the standing US President to learn from the All Black captain.
His latest moment of sportsmanship is going viral after a post-match exchange between Wallaby centurian James Slipper was captured despite a confrontation in the match.
Earlier in the match, Cane took an issue with the way the prop had cleaned him out in the first half, getting up to pin the Wallaby on his back and sparking a push and shove between the two sides and words between the two. After a review by the TMO, both players were cleared of any infringement.
Following the game, it was all respect as Cane offered Slipper a bottle of red wine to celebrate his achievement of reaching 100 test caps. The moment was met with adulation by fans online, with Cane showing why he was voted the most respected player earlier in the year by his fellow players in a New Zealand player poll.
Cane’s praise didn’t stop there, with fans respecting his no frills approach towards the post-match interview where he was upfront and honest about the cards, his team’s failings and where they lost the match.
After the game, Sam Cane refused to blame the cards as the reason for the defeat, saying they lacked the accuracy and smarts in other areas to beat the Wallabies.
“When I think of the game as a whole, it just reminds me of test match rugby. It doesn’t matter if there is fifteen players on each side or it gets down to fourteen vs. fourteen, the game is based off building pressure, playing smart, intensity and accuracy,” he said.
“I didn’t think we were quite smart enough when we got down there, I thought we brought the intensity but lacked a bit of accuracy. Those are the things that hurt us.
When it came to Ofa Tu’ungafasi’s sending off, Cane highlighted that both red-card tackles from either side were down to fine margins and neither player would do it deliberately.
“It’s a fast moving game with big collisions and every now and then, players are going to get it slightly wrong,” he said.
“And I don’t think either of those cards were malicious or dirty plays by any means, just fractionally off.
“We spend a lot of time practising, but in top sport like this there will be the odd error.”
It wasn’t all love for Cane though, the All Blacks flanker had some Australian fans upset with the way we seemed to escape punishment for breaching the offside line and pushing the limits of the breakdown laws.
Many were even calling him ‘McCaw-like’ for his ability to get away with indiscretions which went unnoticed by Australian ref Nic Berry, one of which was an interception from the base of the scrum where he ‘broke far before Wilson even passed that’.
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