Richie to pivot All Blacks against Boks
TEAM ANNOUNCEMENT: All Blacks head coach Ian Foster has named his side for the second Rugby Championship Test against South Africa at Ellis Park Stadium in Johannesburg.
Uncapped tighthead prop Fletcher Newell has been introduced to the match-day 23 as front row cover, while props Ethan de Groot and Tyrel Lomax have been named in the run-on side. They are joined by hooker Samisoni Taukei’aho, while 69-Test veteran Codie Taylor returns to the match-day 23 as cover.
Blindside flank Shannon Frizell has also been moved into the run-on side after being used as an impact player during the first Test in Mbombela, marking his 14th appearance in the No.6 jersey.
In the back row, he is joined by Ardie Savea and captain Sam Cane who will surpass Jerome Kaino (81) as the third-most capped All Black loose forward in Tests.
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The only change made to the backline is at flyhalf. Richie Mo’unga will run out in the No.10 jersey for the first time this season, as he closes in on Carlos Spencer (291) for sixth place on the All Blacks all-time points-scoring list.
“Belief and confidence remain high in our group, which is working incredibly hard this week,” said Foster. “Playing at Ellis Park is always a special occasion for any All Black team, and this weekend will be no different.
“Adding to that, the Freedom Cup is on the line which makes this a challenge that everyone is looking forward to.”
New Zealand: 15 Jordie Barrett, 14 Will Jordan, 13 Rieko Ioane, 12 David Havili, 11 Caleb Clarke, 10 Richie Mo’unga, 9 Aaron Smith, 8 Ardie Savea, 7 Sam Cane (captain), 6 Shannon Frizell, 5 Scott Barrett, 4 Sam Whitelock, 3 Tyrel Lomax, 2 Samson Taukei’aho, 1 Ethan de Groot.
Replacements: 16 Codie Taylor, 17 George Bower, 18 Fletcher Newell, 19 Tupou Vaa’i, 20 Akira Ioane, 21 Finlay Christie, 22 Beauden Barrett, 23 Quinn Tupaea.
Date: Saturday, August 13
Venue: Ellis Park, Johannesburg
Kick-off: 17.05 (03.05 Sunday, August 14 NZ time; 15.05 GMT)
Referee: Luke Pearce (England)
Assistant Referee: Angus Gardner (Australia) & Christophe Ridley (England)
TMO: Brett Cronan (Austalia)