22 Feb 2010

McCaw set to return for Crusaders; while Force sign former All Black first five

6:39 pm on 22 February 2010

The All Blacks captain Richie McCaw is set to return to the Super 14 this weekend.

After taking the opening rounds off to refresh, McCaw was scheduled to return for the match against the Blues in a fortnight but the surprise loss to the Queensland Reds has prompted him to make himself available for Friday's match against the South African side the Sharks in Christchurch.

McCaw is expected to be named in the reserves when the Crusaders side is announced on Wednesday.

And the Western Force has replaced a former Springbok with a former All Black in a bid to solve their first five eighth problems.

The former Chiefs player David Hill, who came off the bench for the All Blacks against Ireland in 2006 for his only Test cap, will replace South African Andre Pretorius, whose season ended before it even began when he tore his hamstring off the bone.

Hill played last season for Japanese club Toshiba and will return there after the Super 14 campaign.

Hill's expected to arrive in Perth later this week, but is unlikely to play the Chiefs, this weekend