5 Oct 2021

Sam Cane to play for King Country

7:34 am on 5 October 2021

All Blacks captain Sam Cane will turn out for King Country in the Heartland Championship this weekend.

Sam Cane during a New Zealand All Blacks training


Cane, who hasn't played since late April, is set to return to the All Blacks for their Northern Hemisphere tour later this month.

All Blacks coach Ian Foster had said they were keen to have Cane play a game before heading off shore.

Cane had to get special dispensation to play for King Country as he plays his provincial rugby for Bay of Plenty, but they have the bye this weekend.

"It's been a long 6 months but the body is ready to play some rugby again. Really looking forward to linking up with the mighty King Country Rams this weekend in the Heartland Championship," Cane said on Twitter.

Winless King Country play Whanganui in Taupō on Saturday.

Cane suffered a pectoral injury playing for the Chiefs against the Blues in Super Rugby Aotearoa in March and later had surgery.

All Blacks coach Ian Foster says Cane won't slip straight back into the captaincy role when he rejoins the All Blacks.

Since Cane's injury there have been three other captains with Ardie Savea leading the side during their Rugby Championship stint in Australia.

"We're going with the staus quo, the players we're brining over are joining this group, so as far as I'm concerned this is the status quo that we have right here so Ardie will continuing leading this team in the short-term future," Foster said from Australia.

29 year old Cane has played 74 Tests since his debut in 2012 and has captained the side nine times.