20 Jul 2011

Henry backs Deans on resting Reds

7:10 pm on 20 July 2011

All Blacks coach Graham Henry's gone into bat for his Wallabies opposite Robbie Deans, after his rejigged Australians lost their opening Test of the season to Samoa.

Deans rested his top Queensland Reds players after they won the Super Rugby final the weekend before but the gamble didn't pay off.

However Henry's done a similar thing in this morning's first team naming - just four Crusaders from the side who lost to the Reds in Brisbane two weeks ago will back up tomorrow night in Dunedin against Fiji.

Three more including pivot Dan Carter are on the bench.

Henry asks what Deans was supposed to do with his champion Reds: "kill them"?

Henry's also labelled the low ticket sales for the Christchurch earthquake fundraiser at Carisbrook as "disappointing" and appealed for Dunedinites to turn out.

About 12,000 seats have been sold at the 29,000 capacity venue.