19 Oct 2008

All Blacks assemble in Auckland, minus Cup finalists

6:42 pm on 19 October 2008

Waikato captain Liam Messam has got his chance to press for a place in the All Blacks.

Along with four other potential new caps, the flanker has been named in the 25-strong training squad for the tour to Hong Kong, the UK and Ireland.

Messam joins fellow tyros Ben Franks, Tanerau Latimer, Jamie Mackintosh and Scott Waldrom in the wider All Blacks group, which assembles tomorrow in Auckland.

The group doesn't include players from Canterbury and Wellington, who are preparing for the Air New Zealand Cup final next weekend.

The camp ends on Thursday and the final All Blacks squad will be named on Sunday morning.

Players at the wider training group camp: John Afoa, Anthony Boric, Jimmy Cowan, Stephen Donald, Jason Eaton, Ben Franks, Andrew Hore, Richard Kahui, Jerome Kaino, Tanerau Latimer, Sione Lauaki, Jamie Mackintosh, Keven Mealamu, Liam Messam, Mils Muliaina, Josevata Rokocoko, Sitiveni Sivivatu, Adam Thomson, Brad Thorn, Isaia Toeava, Anthony Tuitavake, Scott Waldrom, Ali Williams, Tony Woodcock and Rudi Wulf.