All Blacks named to play Namibia in Toulouse

Sep 13 • General News, International, National, New Zealand, Rugby World Cup, Rugby World Cup News • 2258 Views • Comments Off on All Blacks named to play Namibia in Toulouse

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All Blacks selectors Ian Foster, Jason Ryan and Joe Schmidt have announced the side that will face Namibia in the second Rugby World Cup pool game against Namibia.

With the team taking a precautionary approach to Sam Cane’s back injury, Ardie Savea will lead the side onto Stadium de Toulouse on Friday evening.

Lock Samuel Whitelock has been named for what will be his 148th All Blacks Test, equalling Richie McCaw as the most-capped player in the team’s history. Joined in the second row by Brodie Retallick, the pair will extend their world record as a starting lock combination to 66 Tests.

Meanwhile, halfback Cam Roigard will also celebrate a special milestone after being given the nod to make his first start in an All Blacks jersey. Roigard will don the number nine jersey with 120-Test veteran Aaron Smith providing halfback cover.

Second-five eighths David Havili, who made his first appearance of the season as a reserve in Paris last week, has been named in the number 12 jersey alongside midfield partner Anton Lienert-Brown.

“We are expecting a very tough Namibian side to test us on Friday,” said All Blacks coach Ian Foster. “Whilst we were disappointed with the result in the first round, it hasn’t moved our focus from what we need to do to in our pool games. This game is vital for us to grow and we can’t wait to get to Toulouse and test ourselves.”

The All Blacks and Namibia have played each other twice before, with both fixtures having taken place at the Rugby World Cup. In 2015 the sides met at Olympic Stadium in London, where the result was 58-14 in favour of the All Blacks. Four years later in Japan, Namibia fell 71-9.

All Blacks match day 23 (Test caps in brackets)

Ofa Tu’ungafasi (54)
Samisoni Taukei’aho (26)
Nepo Laulala (50)
Brodie Retallick (104)
Samuel Whitelock (147)
Luke Jacobson (16)
Dalton Papali’i (27)
Ardie Savea (c) (76)
Cam Roigard (2)
Damian McKenzie (42)
Leicester Fainga’anuku (4)
David Havili (26)
Anton Lienert-Brown (64)
Caleb Clarke (18)
Beauden Barrett (117)

Dane Coles (87)
Ethan de Groot (18)
Fletcher Newell (9)
Scott Barrett (63)
Tupou Vaa’i (23)
Aaron Smith (120)
Richie Mo’unga (50)
Rieko Ioane (64)

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