New Zealand name initial squad for Test series with Ireland

The All Blacks selectors, Coach Steve Hansen, Assistant Coach Ian Foster and fellow selector Grant Fox, have selected 35 players to attend two training camps ahead of the three Steinlager Series Tests against Ireland.

The first wider training group camp will be held in Auckland from next Sunday 20 May – Tuesday 22 May with the second camp in Wellington from Sunday 27 May – Tuesday 29 May. “We have two aims with the selection of the players for the camps. Our main aim is to begin to prepare a squad to win the Steinlager Series against Ireland; and secondly, it gives us the opportunity to introduce and work with some younger, talented players in the All Blacks environment,” Hansen said.

The 35 players attending the camps are as follows:

Charlie Faumuina, Ma’a Nonu, Keven Mealamu, Piri Weepu, Ali Williams and Tony Woodcock.

Sam Cane, Aaron Cruden, Richard Kahui, Tawera Kerr-Barlow, Brodie Retallick, Ben Tameifuna and Sonny Bill Williams.

Beauden Barrett, Cory Jane, Julian Savea, Brad Shields, Conrad Smith and Victor Vito.

Daniel Carter, Wyatt Crockett, Israel Dagg, Andy Ellis, Ben Franks, Owen Franks, Richie McCaw, Kieran Read, Luke Romano, Luke Whitelock and Samuel Whitelock.

Tamati Ellison, Andrew Hore, Aaron Smith, Ben Smith and Adam Thomson.

5 thoughts on “New Zealand name initial squad for Test series with Ireland

  1. I’m guessing then that this selection is for the first aim of winning the series against Ireland.

    On paper, a very good squad. On the strength of recent performances, not sure whether Weepu is worth his place. Not sure why there is no Robbie Fruean there either, he has been brilliant so far this season, as has Zac Guildford.

    Should be a interesting year for the All Blacks though, as they try to include some new players in the set up.

    1. Way too many crusaders and blues. I don’t think they are seriously considering nonu and weepu.

      I would have put rutlidge, fruean and andre taylor in there though.

      Ireland should be terrified of those chiefs backs

      1. Rutledge? He’s too old now. AB’s should have selected Hika Elliott or Dane Coles as third hooker. Trying prop Ben Tameifuna in that position just seems a bit left-field.

        Some of the selections seem rather strange. Luke Whitelock, Luke Romano and Brad Shields? All talented but have not played much this year so picking them on potential is quite dangerous.

        Must be heart-breaking for players which have bust a gut this year in Super 15 too. Can’t imagine big guys such as Nasi Manu took it too well!

        1. There’s still the tri nations and tests against argentina should give some more players international experience.

          On current form I would choose Read, Hore and Conrad Smith for experience plus a few more. Mccaw as more of a formality even though he had a bad game against the rebels.

  2. Hey mr H?! What the heck? I feel Fruean very unlucky.. As is Taylor.. Dagg way to casual and relaxed in his decision-making, he’s going to cost us a game :-(

Comments are closed.