Thursday 21 March 2019

Richie McCaw cleared to play in World Cup final

Captain Richie McCaw of the New Zealand All Blacks consoles Victor Matfield of South Africa at the end of the match during the 2015 Rugby World Cup Semi Final match between South Africa and New Zealand at Twickenham Stadium on October 24, 2015 in London, United Kingdom. (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)
Captain Richie McCaw of the New Zealand All Blacks consoles Victor Matfield of South Africa at the end of the match during the 2015 Rugby World Cup Semi Final match between South Africa and New Zealand at Twickenham Stadium on October 24, 2015 in London, United Kingdom. (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)

New Zealand's Richie McCaw will not be cited after an incident in the semi-final win over South Africa and is free to play in next week's final against Australia.

World Rugby confirmed the decision this evening after studying footage after McCaw's hip made contact with the shoulder of South Africa's Francois Louw in the first-half of yesterday's match.

All Black coach Steven Hansen had earlier strongly defended his man.

"No. There’s nothing in it so there’s nothing to talk about. Everyone’s got a bit excited and we move on," he said.

“He’s a man that draws a lot of attention because he’s a great player, maybe the greatest player in the history of the game, and if he’s not in your team, then he’s a pain in the rear end.

Watch the incident here:

"So if you can’t get him on the track, let’s get him off the track sort of thing. It’s a mark of respect really. He takes it in his stride.”

Hansen praised his side's composure in the tight final 10 minutes that saw them through to the final with a two-point win.

“I had a lot of faith in our composure. We’ve been in a lot of tight spots over the past four years and before that," he said.

"When you’ve got the experience we’ve got, and a lot of people have made noises about guys being too old, but they’re in good form and if they’ve been around a long time, they bring a lot of experience. You get a lot of inner self-belief from that.”

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