Super 14
Hore succeeds So'oialo as Hurricanes skipper
January 27, 2010
Hurricanes skipper Rodney So'oialo celebrates a try, Hurricances v Stormers, Westpac Stadium, Wellington, April 18, 2009
Rodney So'oialo has stepped aside as Hurricanes skipper © Getty Images

All Blacks hooker Andrew Hore has succeeded No.8 Rodney So'oialo as Hurricanes skipper for the forthcoming Super 14.

So'oialo, 30, wants to focus on his own game and extend his playing career. The veteran will have one eye on building his case for inclusion in the All Blacks' 2011 Rugby World Cup squad after losing out to Cantabrian Kieran Read for much of the 2009 Test season.

He succeeded Tana Umaga in the role as Hurricanes skipper in 2006 and has led the side in 49 Super Rugby matches since his appointment.

"I want to offer the Hurricanes and the franchise the best I have and to do that I need to really focus on getting my body right," So'oialo told The Dominion Post. "It was tough, but then again you have to make these decisions to benefit the team and yourself really. I want to try and continue to contribute my all to the Hurricanes and to the All Blacks for the next two years."

Hore, a veteran of 47 Tests, has not captained at first-class level and was surprised by the call. The Hurricanes have a pre-season match against the Brumbies in Porirua on Friday and open their Super 14 campaign against the Blues in Auckland on February 12.

"I did expect (So'oialo) to carry on, but it's a mark of the man really that he's done what he thinks is best for the team," he said.


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