RWC 2011: New Zealand name side to face the Wallabies

New Zealand coach Graham Henry on Friday announced his team to play Australia in their semi-final match at Eden Park, Auckland, on Sunday, 16 October. Aaron Cruden comes in at number 10, with Stephen Donald on the bench, whilst Richard Kahui and Israel Dagg return in the back three. Richie McCaw is passed fit and leads the side, whilst Sonny Bill Williams is on the bench.

New Zealand:

1. Tony Woodcock, 2. Keven Mealamu, 3. Owen Franks, 4. Brad Thorn, 5. Sam Whitelock, 6. Jerome Kaino, 7. Richie McCaw (c), 8. Kieran Read, 9. Piri Weepu, 10. Aaron Cruden, 11. Richard Kahui, 12. Ma’a Nonu, 13. Conrad Smith, 14. Cory Jane, 15. Israel Dagg

Replacements:

16. Andrew Hore, 17. Ben Franks, 18. Ali Williams, 19. Victor Vito, 20. Andy Ellis, 21. Stephen Donald, 22. Sonny Bill Williams

10 thoughts on “RWC 2011: New Zealand name side to face the Wallabies

  1. I agree with Ben, losing to Australia just wouldn’t be choking.

    Aussie have beaten South Africa to get here, and they did it by competing in the breakdown and with great defence (usually some of their weaknesses).

    I think NZ are favourites, but only just. AB’s have a massive advantage in the scrum but depending on how the game is ref’d that may been only a marginal benefit.

    It’s going to be very very tight!

    1. All depends on how many penalties Aus or indeed NZ concede for me. Weepu looks good enough to send them over all day. If they don’t conceded and defend the way they did against SA, the AB’s could get frustrated and Oz could exploit that. Big day for Cory Jane, who is a uniquely skilled wing – so quick off the blocks, he’s like a rocket. Dagg at full back could be the clincher if Beale doesn’t play – there’s not much between these two. I think the AB’s will take it and with someone like Sonny Bill Williams to come on at the latter stages, the kiwis could be really unstoppable. This is the real final as far as I’m concerned.

  2. These are two teams who know each other very well. The core of both sides have played each other four times already this year.

    The wallabies will be salivating at this opportunity.

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