By MARC HINTON in Sydney
Don't hold your breath New Zealand, but the best rugby player on the planet says he may be just weeks away from deciding on his post-World Cup future.
Yes, Richie McCaw is about to ponder his rugby life after 2011, and he's certainly not ruling out the chance of staying right where he is to wind down one of the great careers in All Blacks history.
McCaw confirmed at yesterday's media appearance on Sydney's waterfront that he'd had his one-on-one debrief with national coach Graham Henry this week and that they'd discussed the best way for the captain to negotiate the rest of the year.
But beyond that McCaw wasn't ready to give too much away, other than to say it may be time to start thinking about his long-term future.
"I haven't given too much thought to it at this minute," McCaw said of his future after his NZRU contract ends next year. His chat with Henry had been confined to this year's schedule with some general thoughts on how best to tackle the World Cup season.
"Perhaps after this week with a couple of weeks at home it might be time to start having a bit of a think about it and see where I'm at.
"But I'm not rushing into things. I'm really enjoying what I'm doing at the moment, and I just want it to continue, have a bit of a think about it and hopefully come up with a good answer."
McCaw said Henry's chat with all the All Blacks on a case by case basis had been largely about planning for the remainder of the year to "make sure guys get enough rest".
"It's also so guys going back to play in the ITM Cup keep working on the right things, and looking at what areas you can keep working on so coach and player are on the same page.
"I think it's been really valuable. Hopefully in the long-term everyone is aiming to be a better player which is what we're after."
There has also been talk that World Cup year workloads will have to be carefully managed among the core All Blacks. More so when the increased demands of the Super 15 expansion are factored in.
McCaw said Super 15 commitments had yet to be discussed with All Blacks management but he felt it was a discussion that would have to be had eventually.
"From my point of view I'll play it by ear. Like I have this year I'll have a yarn with Todd at some point with the Crusaders and come up with a plan so the Crusaders get the best out of you, but also so you're in good nick to play the full season."