Eight months after hobbling off Loftus Versfeld in Pretoria with what turned out to be a broken neck, All Blacks openside Sam Cane could be about to return to rugby.
The 60-test veteran's been training with the Chiefs for the past month, and coach Colin Cooper's hinted his comeback is almost complete.
But Cane's absence has had a silver lining for another of the Chiefs stars in halfback Brad Weber.
With Cane out and co-captain Brodie Retallick sidelined for three more weeks, the Chiefs have needed leaders to stand up and Weber has been that guy.
- Weber relishes 'argy bargy' in testy Sharks encounter
- Sensational Savea returns to his roots
- Sam Cane set to return from injury
And he's loved the extra responsibility of leading a young team with 14 players out injured.
His form has been as strong as his leadership, being preferred over the country's third-rated halfback Te Toiroa Tahuriorangi, who wasn't even used off the bench in their nail-biter against the Sharks.
Four years after his solitary test, Cooper expects Weber to be in the running for an All Blacks return,
Cooper says Weber's pass and kicking game have improved and his teammates have noticed.
Watch the full story above
Join us for live updates of Blues v Chiefs from 7pm Saturday