29 Jun 2017

Savea on the outer as Naholo gets nod

6:04 am on 29 June 2017

Hurricanes wing and 53-test veteran Julian Savea has again been left out of the All Blacks team to face the British and Irish Lions in Saturday night's second test in Wellington.

Julian Savea scores.

Julian Savea scores. Photo: Photosport

With fullback Ben Smith ruled out with concussion Israel Dagg moves to the back, with Waisake Naholo coming onto the right wing.

Waisake Naholo in action for the All Blacks

Waisake Naholo in action for the All Blacks Photo: PHOTOSPORT

Rieko Ioane retains his place on the left wing, leaving no room for Savea, who's second equal with Christian Cullen and Joe Rokococo on the All Blacks top try-scorers list (46). Savea also missed out in the first test.

Rieko Ioane goes in for his try.

Rieko Ioane goes in for his try. Photo: PhotoSport

Centre Anton Lienert-Brown comes in for the injured Ryan Crotty as expected, joining Sonny Bill Williams, Beauden Barrett and Aaron Smith in the backline.

Midfielder and potential debutant Ngani Laumape comes onto the bench following the 24-year-old's strong performance in the Hurricanes 31-31 draw with the Lions on Tuesday.

Ngani Laumape celebrates his try.

Ngani Laumape celebrates his try. Photo: Photosport

The forward pack is unchanged from the first test win in Auckland, with No. 8 Kieran Read captaining the side.

"Whilst it's disappointing to lose both Ben Smith and Ryan Crotty, it creates an opportunity for others," said coach Steve Hansen.

"Izzy [Israel Dagg] is a world-class back three player, as is Anton in the midfield, and both Waisake and Ngani are coming into the Test side following outstanding performances against the Lions for their respective Super franchises.

Hansen said he was happy with the win last weekend but it was just a start in a three-test series.

"That means the job is far from done. It's going to require us to take our game to a higher level. It's going to be very demanding, physically and mentally, on both sides.

"We're aware the British and Irish Lions have their backs to the wall and will chuck everything at us to keep themselves alive in the series. They are a quality side who we respect immensely.

"In reality, last week's test could've gone either way had they taken more of their chances. Our job will be to make sure that we shut down their counter-attack better than we did last weekend and at the same time, win the critical moments across the 80 minutes. As always, it'll start with the battle of the tight five.

"We've worked hard throughout the week in our preparation here in Wellington and are now looking forward to Saturday."

Team:

1. Joe Moody (26)

2. Codie Taylor (17)

3. Owen Franks (92)

4. Brodie Retallick (62)

5. Samuel Whitelock (86)

6. Jerome Kaino (79)

7. Sam Cane (42)

8. Kieran Read (98) - Captain

9. Aaron Smith (60)

10. Beauden Barrett (51)

11. Rieko Ioane (3)

12. Sonny Bill Williams (35)

13. Anton Lienert-Brown (11)

14. Waisake Naholo (12)

15. Israel Dagg (63)

16. Nathan Harris (6)

17. Wyatt Crockett (60)

18. Charlie Faumuina (48)

19. Scott Barrett (6)

20. Ardie Savea (14)

21. TJ Perenara (31)

22. Aaron Cruden (48)

23. Ngani Laumape - new cap

- RNZ

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