Friday, September 11, 2009

Winning is first priority for McCaw

11th September 2009

Both John Smit and his opposing skipper Richie McCaw have spoken about the respect the two teams have for each other, but that will be put to one side with so much at stake this weekend.

Despite their two losses in South Africa, the All Blacks are not yet out of the running to claim their fifth successive Tri-Nations title if they can get a bonus-point win and prevent the Springboks from gaining their all-important bonus point in the process.

"The South Africans, for all the years have always been the tough rival and nothing's changed now," said McCaw.
"We realise every time we play them we've got to be at the top of our game, otherwise we come second.
"We've seen that this year. It's still an exciting thing to put the jersey on and play against them."

Much has been made of New Zealand's need to score four tries on Saturday, something they have failed to do since beating Scotland in Edinburgh at the end of last year.
But McCaw stressed the team's focus was on improving their performance - which has been scratchy all season - and getting the win.

"The desire is there. We just haven't got the execution right. We have trained reasonably well this week to ensure that we get that.
"It would be nice to finish off or get Saturday right with a good performance.
"First and foremost we have to go out to perform and look to win the Test match. What happens after that, you see how the game unfolds."

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