New Zealand coach Graham Henry on Wednesday announced the team to play New Zealand’s opening match in Pool A against Tonga at Eden Park, Auckland, on Friday, 9 September. Mils Muliaina is the surprise omission from the team, replaced by Israel Dagg, with Richard Kahui taking Cory Jane’s 14 shirt and the All Blacks using a new centre combination of Sonny Bill Williams and Ma’a Nonu.
1. Tony Woodcock, 2. Andrew Hore, 3. Owen Franks, 4. Brad Thorn, 5. Ali Williams, 6. Jerome Kaino, 7. Richie McCaw (c), 8. Victor Vito, 9. Jimmy Cowan, 10. Daniel Carter, 11. Isaia Toeava, 12. Sonny Bill Williams, 13. Ma’a Nonu, 14. Richard Kahui, 15. Israel Dagg.
16. Corey Flynn, 17. Ben Franks, 18. Anthony Boric, 19. Sam Whitelock, 20. Piri Weepu, 21. Colin Slade, 22. Cory Jane