New Zealand flanker Sam Cane hopes to return in time for the end of the 2019 Super Rugby season after breaking his neck against South Africa last month.


Cane sustained the injury during the Rugby Championship clash in Pretoria and was fortunate to avoid paralysis.

But the 26-year-old is already targeting a return to action and hopes he could be back in a Chiefs jersey by the end of the next campaign.

“When I look back and see the scans and realise how lucky I am, I’m just happy I’m going to make a recovery and I’ll be back playing,” Cane told The Country radio show.

“There was never really a moment where I was really scared because at the same time that I found out I’d fractured my neck, everything was also alright.

“I could feel my toes, my hands, so there was no stress there. I was already in their care, so it wasn’t going backwards from there.”


Elaborating on his recovery, Cane added: “I’ve got this neck brace on for three months and I hit the halfway point on Monday this week, so another six weeks to go in it.

“Pretty immobile at the moment, parked up at home not able to drive. I’m a stay-at-home dad without the kids, doing jobs around the house and a bit of Netflix. It’s a bit boring.

Watch: All Blacks head coach Steve Hansen explains why Ireland are World Cup favourites.

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“All going well. I’ll probably get the last four to five games of Super Rugby in. We’re a little bit sceptical to put a date on it at the moment because I’ve only seen a specialist once and it all just depends on how it heals.


“[It’s] a lot to do with the bone fusing with the two vertebrae together. It could be longer so I just don’t want to say it’s a date and then keep pushing it out. We’ll just see how it goes. I’m just happy that I’ll be back playing.”

Cane has been the All Blacks’ first-choice number seven since the retirement of Richie McCaw in 2015 and has amassed 60 Test caps.

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