All Blacks Team Named For Heavyweight Clash With Ireland

One vs two.

New Zealand head coach Steve Hansen has made just one change to his starting line-up for this weekend’s clash with Ireland, bringing in Ryan Crotty to replace the injured Sonny Bill Williams.

Anton Lienert-Brown is an addition to the 23, taking Crotty’s place on the bench. Elsewhere it’s as you were, with Hansen putting out the same team that narrowly defeated England at Twickenham.

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 “This will be another great challenge for our squad and one that we’re all really looking forward to. These are the types of Test matches that gets everyone up — it’s number one versus number two — and there’s a real excitement that’s building as we get closer to Saturday.” Hansen said

“The earlier part of our week has been about getting our processes and clarity right, focussing on our core roles and the execution of our skills and then going out and training well.

“On Saturday we’ll be playing an opponent who will want to keep the ball for long periods of time, and if they aren’t getting what they want, then they’ll kick and try to pressure us.

“For us, we’ll need to be strong at set piece, both on our ball and theirs, and be prepared to work hard with or without the ball. When the momentum comes our way, we’ll need to take the opportunities that will come, as the team that makes the most of their opportunities will win the game.”

All Blacks vs Ireland

1. Karl Tu’inukuafe (11)
2. Codie Taylor (40)
3. Owen Franks (105)
4. Brodie Retallick (73)
5. Samuel Whitelock (107)
6. Liam Squire (22)
7. Ardie Savea (33)
8. Kieran Read – captain (116)
9. Aaron Smith (81)
10. Beauden Barrett (71)
11. Rieko Ioane (22)
12. Ryan Crotty (43)
13. Jack Goodhue (6)
14. Ben Smith (75)
15. Damian McKenzie (21)

Replacements:
16. Dane Coles (58)
17. Ofa Tuungafasi (24)
18. Nepo Laulala (15)
19. Scott Barrett (27)
20. Matt Todd (16)
21. TJ Perenara (53)
22. Richie Mo’unga (6)
23. Anton Lienert-Brown (31)