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Samuel Jordan Cane (born 13 January 1992) is a New Zealand rugby union rugby player. His regular playing position is as a loose forward. He currently plays for the Bay of Plenty Steamers in the ITM Cup, the All Blacks and is the current captain of the Chiefs in Super Rugby. Cane has played over 50 tests for New Zealand since his international debut and stood in as Captain for them twice.
Cane during a match against Australia, August 2017
|Full name||Samuel Jordan Cane|
|Date of birth||13 January 1992|
|Place of birth||Rotorua, New Zealand|
|Height||190 cm (6 ft 3 in)|
|Weight||105 kg (231 lb; 16 st 7 lb)|
|School||Tauranga Boys' College|
|Rugby union career|
In 2012 he made his international debut for New Zealand, in the second match of a three match series against Ireland. He made his starting debut in the final match of the series in front of his home crowd in Hamilton, giving a stand out performance that included 16 tackles and two tries. Cane made another three test appearances that year.
Cane was a regular starter for the All Blacks during 2013, with All Black captain Richie McCaw on sabbatical. Cane was one of the team's top try-scorers in 2013, scoring five tries. Cane scored his fifth try of the year on 2 November 2013 when the All Blacks beat Japan 54-6. Cane also received the first yellow card of his international career in the final minute of that game.
He was a key member of 2015 Rugby World Cup winning team, where he captained the side in the match against Namibia, The All Blacks ran riot in this encounter with a very comfortable victory against the Namibian's, the final score was 58 - 14 to the All Blacks. Cane also came off the bench in the knockout rounds of the World Cup, replacing the retiring All Blacks captain Richie McCaw in the final minute of the World Cup-winning 34-17 match over Australia on 31 October 2015.
Following Richie McCaw's retirement, Cane has become an established member of the Chiefs and All Blacks leadership groups, being named as co-captain of the Chiefs with All Blacks team-mate Aaron Cruden. Cane became a regular starter for the All Blacks in 2016, starting in all three tests of the 2016 Steinlager series against Wales. Although he had a sub-par game in the series' third test, receiving the second yellow card of his career, the All Blacks managed to win the series against Wales 3-0.
2016 was a mixed season for Cane, who struggled with injury, having to lend his starting jersey to Matt Todd rookie Ardie Savea occasionally through the season due to injury. Cane captained the All Blacks for the second time in his career, playing the full 80 minutes as captain during a 68-10 win over Italy on 12 November 2016. Cane only lasted 18 minutes on the field the following week against Ireland, leaving the field for a head injury assessment in the 18th minute of the 21-9 win and did not return to the field, being replaced by Savea for the rest of the match.
The 2017 season was a much better season for Cane game-time-wise, as he captained the Chiefs to the semi-finals of Super Rugby, and was selected for the All Blacks' 33-man squad for the 2017 Pasifika Challenge against Samoa and the three-test series against the touring British and Irish Lions. Cane scored the final try of the 78-0 thrashing of Samoa and started in all three tests against the Lions, playing very well. Cane retained his spot as a regular starter for the 2017 Rugby Championship and began to play for the full 80 minutes more regularly, causing Savea to get less game time. Cane made five appearances for New Zealand on the 2017 end-of-season tour and scored two tries on the tour, making headlines alongside replacement prop Ofa Tu'ungafasi for great tackles in the third Bledisloe Cup test of 2017 which was also his 50th test. Cane's 50th test was an 18-23 loss to Australia despite his performance.
On 18 November 2017, Cane became the third-to-most yellow-carded All Black in history, receiving the third of his career during a 22-17 win over Scotland. Cane made the headlines again the following week, for his work rate against Wales in the final test of the year, with the All Blacks winning 33-18 after Cane and winger Rieko Ioane delivered standout performances. Cane was tipped by media to Captain the All Blacks for the third time in his career, against Wales, but lost out to outstanding Crusaders lock and 96-test veteran Sam Whitelock.
Cane was retained as the Chiefs' Co-Captain by new Head Coach Colin Cooper for the 2018 Super Rugby season, with departing midfielder Charlie Ngatai selected as the other Captain. He performed incredibly in the Chiefs' first few games of 2018, including the opening game on 24 February 2018. In the first half, Cane outsprinted Crusaders winger George Bridge to score a solo try 50m from the goal posts. The Chiefs lost 45-23.
Despite his promising initial start to the 2018 season, Cane fell back into his regular form pattern, with an injury-enforced lack of game time causing Cane to lose form. In the absence of injured All Blacks captain Kieran Read, Cane was named by All Blacks Head Coach Steve Hansen as one of two Vice-Captains for the 2018 Steinlager series against France, alongside outside back Ben Smith, with Sam Whitelock named as Captain in Read's absence.
Cane was initially in doubt to play against France due to an abdominal injury, with Matt Todd called in as injury cover again, but managed to make the field on 9 June 2018 to play as the All Blacks beat France 52-11. Despite an outstanding team performance from the All Blacks, Cane's ill-discipline once again caused controversy. Cane and replacement prop Ofa Tu'ungafasi both tackled French winger Rémy Grosso high, causing a head clash between the three players. Grosso sustained two facial fractures, being ruled out of the rest of the series. Cane was also heavily penalised in the second test, a 26-13 win for the All Blacks. Cane was replaced by Ardie Savea only 43 minutes into the second test due to poor behaviour. Cane was subsequently dropped for the third test, with Savea starting in his place, with Matt Todd on the bench.
Following the Steinlager series against France, Cane lead the Chiefs to the Super Rugby quarter-finals, where they lost to the Hurricanes, 31-32. Cane then went on to play in five of the six fixtures, during the 2018 Rugby Championship. On 6 October 2018, Cane started in the final match of the Rugby Championship, against South Africa. Cane was only on the field for 36 minutes, before fracturing his neck during a collision with Springboks veteran loose forward Francois Louw. Cane was immediately replaced by Hurricanes loose forward, Ardie Savea, who went on to score the All Blacks' winning try, allowing them to beat South Africa 32-30. Cane will not play rugby again in 2018 and his return to professional rugby has an undetermined date.