Gallagher Chiefs loose forward and co-captain Sam Cane will become the latest Investec Super Rugby centurion when he runs out against the Highlanders in Hamilton on Friday night.
26-year-old Cane has been named to start the eagerly-anticipated New Zealand derby match at FMG Stadium Waikato and will become the 56th New Zealand player and just the seventh Chiefs player to reach the special milestone, joining Mils Muliaina, Liam Messam, Tanerau Latimer, Hikawera Elliot, Aaron Cruden and Stephen Donald.
Cane played his first match for the Chiefs against the Lions in Johannesburg in 2011, with career highlights being the back-to-back Super Rugby champion titles in 2012 and 2013. He made his All Blacks debut in 2012 and has played 53 Test matches to date.
New Zealand Rugby Chief Executive Steve Tew said: “On behalf of New Zealand Rugby, I want to congratulate Sam on reaching this very special milestone and he and his family can be very proud of what he has achieved.
“He was a young man of 19 when he first made his Investec Super Rugby debut and just 20 years old when selected for the All Blacks, but he has always shown a maturity beyond his years and is now a respected leader in both teams. We join all rugby fans in applauding his achievement.”
Chiefs Head Coach Colin Cooper added: “Sam has shown lots of hard work and sacrifice to earn his 100th game, which is an outstanding effort – it’s great to be involved with him on his 100th. He’s an outstanding leader of the group, and doesn’t just talk it, but walks it big time on the field.”
Following Friday’s match, New Zealand Rugby (NZR) will present Cane with a pounamu mere, the traditional NZR gift for players who play 100 Super Rugby games for New Zealand sides. Cane is the fifth player to reach a Super Rugby century of matches so far this year, following Crusaders lock Luke Romano and Hurricanes players Ben May, Beauden Barrett and TJ Perenara.