All Blacks not daunted by World Cup pressure

All Blacks flanker Sam Cane says that the New Zealand Rugby team are not daunted
by the expectation that they will win back to back Rugby World Cups.

The All Blacks are the current Rugby World Cup champions and will leave New
Zealand for England as the number one ranked team having lost just three of
47 Tests since the last World Cup in 2011.

While the All Blacks have started every Rugby World Cup as the favourites they
have only won the tournament twice and on both occasions they were at home.

Past All Blacks have been accused of being chokers on the big stage especially in
1999 and 2007 as they failed to win the tournament but
Cane says that the current squad are relishing the pressure.

“The overall feeling is we’re truly excited and there’s no real feeling
of carrying the weight of expectation or anything weighing us down,” he
told reporters.

“We’re really looking to embrace the challenge.”

The New Zealand public expects nothing less than a tournament win from Richie
McCaw’s men, but to achieve the feat they must become the first All Black team
to claim the trophy on foreign soil and the first from any nation to defend
the crown.

“We can’t wait to get over there,” Cane said.

Assistant coach Ian Foster said the players held nothing back at training in
Auckland as they prepare to open their campaign with a bruising clash against
Argentina at Wembley on September 20.

“It was needed,” Foster said. “Sometimes you don’t have to enjoy
something but you know it’s good for you.

“What you can’t do is go into a massive Test against Argentina in 12 days
unprepared and not ready for the physicalness that’s going to come.”

The All Blacks depart for England on Thursday.

The bookmarkers have
New Zealand to win the Rugby World Cup at 5/4.

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