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All Blacks make 1 change for 1st England test

All Blacks make 1 change for 1st England test

New Zealand has made one injury-forced change to its starting lineup for the first of two rugby tests against England at Auckland on Saturday.
Veteran Greg Somerville has been named at tighthead prop in place of John Afoa, who suffered a medial ligament strain in last weekend's test against Ireland and is sidelined for four weeks. New Zealand won that match at Wellington 21-11.
Anthony Tuitavake, who was the only new cap in the team that played Ireland, has held his place on the right wing as the All Blacks selectors gave a second chance to players prevented from showing their best form by bitterly cold and wet conditions in Wellington.
"This is our best side right now," coach Graham Henry said.
"We should benefit from another week of training together. It'll take a bit of time to establish this team and we need to take another couple of steps forward this weekend," Henry said. "We'll have to be a bit sharper if we are to defeat England. They have some very experienced internationals plus some new players coming through who might not be well known in New Zealand, but will be real challenge on Saturday night."
England was due to name its team later Tuesday.
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New Zealand: Mil Muliaina, Anthony Tuitavake, Conrad Smith, Ma'a Nonu, Sitiveni Sivivatu, Dan Carter, Andy Ellis, Jerome Kaino, Richie McCaw, captain, Rodney So'oialo, Ali Williams, Brad Thorne, Greg Somerville, Andrew Hore, Neemia Tialata. Reserves: Keven Mealamu, John Schwalger, Anthony Boric, Sione Lauaki, Jimmy Cowan, Stephen Donald, Leon MacDonald.


Updated : 2021-03-01 09:39 GMT+08:00