All Blacks captain Richie McCaw has been nominated for a royal honour, and possibly a knighthood, after leading his team to victory in the Rugby World Cup.
The Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet, which collates and presents all nominations, confirmed McCaw’s name had been put forward for an honour.
There are eight levels of New Zealand royal honour, ranging from the Order of New Zealand to the Queen’s Service Medal.
Nominators do not choose which honour they want their person to receive.
The prime minister makes a recommendation to the Queen on which honour is appropriate.
They are announced in the New Year’s and Queen’s Birthday honours lists.
In an interview before the Rugby World Cup, Prime Minister John Key joked that McCaw would be knighted if he led the All Blacks to victory.
Between 700 and 800 people are nominated for royal honours each year.
Only a select few sports people have been knighted while still competing at the highest level, including Sir Richard Hadlee and Sir Russell Coutts.
McCaw also played his 100th Test match for the All Blacks during the Rugby World Cup.
by Buford Balony