New Zealand team to play Ireland

all blacksSteve Hansen has made several changes to the New Zealand side to take on Ireland on Sunday.

Aaron Cruden comes in for the injured Dan Carter at fly-half, while Cory Jane returns to the XV in place of Charles Piutau. In the forwards, there is a complete change of the front row as Wyatt Crockett, Andrew Hore and Charlie Faumuina all start. Behind them Luke Romano gets a start in place of Brodie Retallick, while Steven Luatua comes in on the blindside for Liam Messam.

On the bench, Sam Cane, TJ Perenara (who will win his first cap should he come on), Beauden Barrett and Ryan Crotty all feature.

“This Test against the Irish is another great opportunity for the team to put in a performance we can all be proud of,” said Hansen. “Though we have won the last two Tests on the Air New Zealand European Tour (against France and England), we would like to see an improvement on those two performances.

“We love playing in Ireland and have a lot of respect for the Irish. We well remember the second Test against them in Christchurch last year (when the All Blacks just won 22-19) and we know that if our minds aren’t totally on the job in our preparation this week and in the game on Sunday, then we will suffer.”

New Zealand team to play Ireland:
15 Israel Dagg, 14 Cory Jane, 13 Ben Smith, 12 Ma’a Nonu, 11 Julian Savea, 10 Aaron Cruden, 9 Aaron Smith, 8 Kieran Read, 7 Richie McCaw (capt), 6 Steven Luatua, 5 Sam Whitelock, 4 Luke Romano, 3 Charlie Faumuina, 2 Andrew Hore, 1 Wyatt Crockett.
Replacements: 16 Dane Coles, 17 Ben Franks, 18 Owen Franks, 19 Brodie Retallick, 20 Sam Cane, 21 TJ Perenara, 22 Beauden Barrett, 23 Ryan Crotty.