Sam Cane, the All Blacks’ captain, will be absent from this weekend’s game against Australia at Eden Park, but Ardie Savea will start in the back row for the Rugby Championship match.
In New Zealand’s most recent game, a 39-37 victory against the Wallabies in Melbourne, Flanker Cane and Center David Havili both sustained concussions. As a result, they will both be out from Saturday’s rematch in Auckland.
Lock Sam Whitelock will captain the team in Cane’s absence for a match that the All Blacks must win decisively to prevent South Africa from stealing the championship following their match against Argentina in the final round.
An totally new back row, with Dalton Papali’i at openside flanker in lieu of Cane, Akira Ioane at blindside in place of the injured Scott Barrett, and Savea back at number eight after missing the Melbourne game due to the birth of his third child, returns.
Similar to what he did in the Melbourne game, Jordie Barrett moves from fullback to inside centre to take Havili’s position, while his brother Beauden is promoted from the bench to onto the field in the number 15 jersey.
Samisoni Taukei’aho was moved to the bench and Dane Coles was left off the roster as coach Ian Foster also nominated Codie Taylor to the position of hooker.
Quinn Tupaea, who was substituted in Melbourne but sustained a knee injury that would ruin his season, is replaced by Roger Tuivasa-Sheck as a midfield backup.
Australians lock On Thursday, Darcy Swain received a six-week suspension for the reckless cleanout that injured Tupaea.
Beauden Barratt is on Team 15. Will Jordan (14), Riko Ioane, Twelve. Jordie Barrett, Caleb Clarke (#11), ten) Richie Mo’unga 9. Aaron Smith 8 – Ardie Savea Dalton Papalii, Six. Akira Ioane Sam Whitelock, #5 (captain), Four (4) Brodie Retallick Three-Tyrel Lomax (2) Codie Taylor First, Ethan de Groot
16-Samisoni Taukei’aho and Ofa Tu’ungafasi (17), Nepo Laulala (18), Tupou Vaa’i, 19, Hoskins Sotutu (20), 21. Finlay Christie Roger Tuivasa-Sheck, number 22, Sevu Reece, 23,