All Blacks captain Richie McCaw has undergone surgery to remove a screw from his injured right foot.
The screw was inserted during surgery earlier this year to help repair a stress fracture but it caused McCaw problems during the Super rugby competition, the international season and the Rugby World Cup.
The All Blacks' doctor Deb Robinson says Thursday's operation in Christchurch has gone well, with McCaw also having a bone graft.
She says an x-ray on the foot prior to surgery showed the stress fracture had started to heal in the four weeks since the World Cup.
McCaw will be in plaster for two weeks and will then need to wear a moonboot for a month.
In late January to mid-February he'll be able to begin running again before returning to rugby training.