http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10761454 Tuesday Oct 25, 2011
Victorious All Black captain Richie McCaw is being lauded as one of our greatest leaders, but to his parents he's still just their boy.
McCaw, 30, led from the front as the All Blacks claimed the Rugby World Cup in a nail-biting final win over France that left his father, Don McCaw, exhausted.
"We are very proud, of course," Mr McCaw told the Herald.
"It lived up to everything that we imagined. It was a huge sense of relief [when the final was won]."
Asked if there were tears shed, Mr McCaw said: "Yeah, there probably was. I don't really remember."
When he met his son after the match, he simply shook his hand and told him "well done".
Debate has begun about where Richie McCaw - who has battled through a foot injury during the tournament - rates among the All Black greats. But his father finds that "a tricky question".
"I'm just really proud of what he's done. I'm not quite sure how you compare him with other players. I've watched rugby all my life and each generation is so different. Every kid's heroes are heroes to them forever, I suppose. He will be looked up to by the eyes of a few."
McCaw's Crusaders coach and former teammate Todd Blackadder has no doubts that McCaw will take his place in history as one of the greatest captains and players to pull on the black jersey.
"He's just been immense. Not just what he's dealt with with the whole foot thing, but the way that he's led that team. You're talking about a guy that can't train properly during the week, and he goes out there and he puts in a huge performance on the field. He really led that team to victory. He is truly inspirational. He deserves every accolade that he receives."
Blackadder thinks McCaw still has four or five years of top-class rugby left in him.
"He's probably capable of doing another [World Cup]. That's just how professional he is. He does a lot for the community and he's good with people, so he does all those little things really well."
For now, Don McCaw just hopes his son can have a good break from rugby.
"I think he really needs one. Perhaps a bit of socialising and a bit of gliding and time out, it would be wonderful for him. If he can find somewhere to go that's nice and quiet for a bit, he will probably do that."
By Jarrod Booker