Crusaders won’t risk McCaw against Hurricanes

The Crusaders will not risk playing Richie McCaw in next week’s must win Super Rugby match against the Hurricanes in Wellington if he has any signs of concussion.

All Black captain McCaw was knocked unconscious in the Crusaders 29-15 victory over the Blues in Christchurch and had to leave the field.

Thirty-four-year-old McCaw was knocked out in a tackle on Lolagi Visinia and was unconscious for just under a minute.

Crusaders coach Todd Blackadder says the McCaw will need to make a swift recovery if he is to play the Hurricanes.

“If he’s not right, there’s no way he will play Richie,” Blackadder told Fairfax Media.

“We will wait to see how he’s feeling this week and he will to go through the correct procedures and protocols.

“That isn’t to say he won’t be right and he felt pretty good after the game. But without absolutely ruling him out, I would say it is probably unlikely. He will have to be absolutely right in passing the CogSport test.”

McCaw immediately left the field after the incident and went to have a concussion test but Blackadder revealed that after viewing a replay of the incident in the 64th minute he told doctor Deb Robinson he had been knocked out and must be replaced.

The All Black world cup winner last suffered a head injury in May 2011 and has been troubled with thumb, rib and foot in recent years.

After the match McCaw was seen chatting to fellow players and did not show any signs of a problem. On Sunday he attended a medical clinic and has been described as being in “pretty good” spirits.

If McCaw misses the Hurricanes match he will be replaced by open side specialist Matt Todd.

If the injury does rule McCaw out it will be a blow for the player as prior to the match he admitted he was not playing at his best but looked to have turned the corner against the Blues and delivered several crucial turnovers for the Crusaders.

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