All Blacks captain Sam Cane urges New Zealand Rugby to reconsider selection of overseas players

Sam Cane will be having a short stint with Japanese side Suntory Sungoliath
Sam Cane will be having a short stint with Japanese side Suntory Sungoliath

All Blacks captain Sam Cane said that the New Zealand Rugby should reconsider their national selection criteria for players plying trade overseas.

Cane is currently involved with Japanese side Suntory Sungoliath after signing a short-term stint but will be available for New Zealand's international fixtures. He will also be joined by World Player of the Year Ardie Savea in Japan and and South African Cheslin Kolbe in the Japan One League.

While Cane and Savea will not miss the Tests for New Zealand, fly-half Richie Mo'unga has signed a multi-year deal with Toshiba Brave Lupus effectively ruling him out of All Blacks selection.

Citing the example of Springbok players, Cane said allowing overseas bound players can only add to the competitiveness in the squad.

"A lot of the Springboks have shown the ability to play in League One and go back to international rugby fairly quickly and continue to play their best," Cane said at a news conference in Tokyo when asked if it was time for a rule change.

Nevertheless, the New Zealand board issued a statement that they are not looking to change any of the criteria in near future.

"Any significant change to the criteria is not foreseeable in the short term and would require significant consultation with all our stakeholders.

"NZR continues to look at ways to maintain the competitiveness of competitions and national teams globally."

Former coach Ian Foster warned the New Zealand board of altering any rules, incoming head coach Scott Robertson said he would be open for any changes.

"We will have conversations, you have got to be a step ahead,'' Robertson said on the subject. "If you are a step behind and then changing rules, and that is when you get caught.

"I will present the board where I think the game is heading, potentially, but a lot of that will be happening when I get in the role.''