Reaction to All Blacks captain Richie McCaw’s retirement

Some reaction to the retirement from rugby of New Zealand captain Richie McCaw:

''In my opinion, he will go down not only as the greatest All Black of all time, but the greatest captain we have ever had, and possibly the greatest player to have ever played the game in the modern era. To play 148 tests is something to be marveled at on its own, particularly with the physical demands of the position he plays. But the more impressive thing about those 148 games is the quality of the performances. Having been involved in the majority of those test matches, I can't recall him ever playing a bad game.'' – New Zealand coach Steve Hansen.

''Richie played against the Springboks 26 times (and) we were on the receiving end of his ability 20 times – no player has beaten the Springboks more than him. Ever since he made his Super Rugby debut for the Crusaders way back in 2001, South African teams have been trying to figure out how to get the better of him. But the real measure of a rugby giant of the game isn't always his statistics and records, rather how he is seen by his peers, and here in South Africa he is very highly regarded.'' – Oregan Hoskins, president of the South African Rugby Union.

''What he has achieved on the field, as an individual and as captain of the All Blacks, is nothing short of unbelievable. Richie will probably go down as the best who has ever played this game.'' Jean de Villiers, retired South Africa captain.

''For 15 years, he has been a highly respected adversary for Australian teams, and is a class individual, and a tremendous competitor who is deeply admired by fans and his peers. On and off the field, he personified the values of rugby and is one of its finest ambassadors.'' – Bill Pulver, CEO of the Australian Rugby Union.

''You can just see the bruises, the scars that he wears. I do think he's the best rugby player of all time. He's won more trophies and medals than any other player.'' – Phil Waugh, former Australia flanker.

''Well done to Richie McCaw. The greatest rugby player there ever was and will be. What a champion.'' – Ronan O'Gara, former Ireland flyhalf.

''Congrats to Richie McCaw on an incredible career! Thanks for the amazing contribution you made to the game of rugby.'' – South African Super Rugby side the Sharks.

''Congrats to (at)AllBlacks captain Richie McCaw on an incredible career. Enjoy your retirement! (hashtag)Legend.'' England Rugby tweet.