Two new caps in All Blacks
Mon, 29 Oct 2012 9:32a.m.
By 3 News online staff
All Blacks coach Steve Hansen has included two new caps in his 32-man squad for the four-test European tour.
Hurricanes hooker Dane Coles and Chiefs halfback Tawera Kerr-Barlow have been named in the squad that will play tests against Scotland, Wales and England.
Along with Coles and Kerr-Barlow, Beauden Barrett and Ali Williams have been added to the original 28 players that travelled to South Africa and Argentina for the Rugby Championship.
Halfback Piri Weepu has also been selected ahead of Andy Ellis, while Williams makes the squad despite not playing for the All Blacks since injuring his knee in Christchurch in June.
Barrett has been officially brought into the fold after being used as cover throughout the Rugby Championship.
Hansen said that there had been 29 players used throughout the season – 30 if you include Williams – and the selection of the 32 today is “a reward for how the team’s played and how the individuals have played within the team”.
He says that obviously there’s been a debate over the selection of a fourth lock, with the 75-test veteran Williams chosen because he “brings a huge mount of experience” that the younger players can feed off and learn from.
Hansen described Kerr-Barlow as the “form third halfback” and is one of nine young players used this year.
“This tour’s about us continuing to develop those nine young men,” says Hansen.
When it comes down to hooker and the selection of Coles, he says it came down to a “two horse race” with Hika Elliot.
“The door’s not closed on his (Elliot) opportunities in the future, but we do need to find out a little more about Dane Coles so hence his selection,” says Hansen.
He added that he intends to give game time to all the players during the first two tests against Scotland and Italy, with a full-strength test team to be picked against Wales.
Flanker Adam Thomson has been selected even though he is yet to commit to New Zealand rugby beyond this year. There is speculation Thomson may be on the verge of signing with a Japanese club.
All Blacks European tour squad:
Forwards: Dane Coles, Keven Mealamu, Andrew Hore, Owen Franks, Ben Franks, Charlie Faumuina, Wyatt Crockett, Tony Woodcock, Sam Whitleock, Brodie Retallick, Luke Romano, Ali Williams, Richie McCaw, Kieran Read, Victor Vito, Adam Thomson, Liam Messam Sam Cane
Backs: Piri Weepu Aaron Smith, Tawera Kerr-Barlow, Daniel Carter, Aaron Cruden, Beauden Barrett, Ma’a Nonu, Tamati Ellison, Conrad Smith, Ben Smith, Cory Jane, Julian Savea, Hosea Gear, Israel Dagg
Test tour itinerary:
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30/10/2012 11:48:42 a.m.
Does Robbie Fruean have to sleep with someone to get picked?
30/10/2012 6:21:20 a.m.
@ Ivan, sorry, but Hansen and co have given in to Williams. He is no world class player, all I can see is a free trip for Williams and perhaps his swan-song? Williams was out of his depth as Bill wrote. i guess he is a mate of Grant Fox - another former Blues. As I said, Hansen has done fine without him.
29/10/2012 9:21:34 p.m.
how much is Ali Williams paying Hansen he,s over the hill he can,t evan last at ITM cup with out breaking down
29/10/2012 5:05:55 p.m.
why has Andy Ellis not been selected instead we choose a player who cant even book a start for the Blues?
29/10/2012 1:17:53 p.m.
So once again Hansen has selected his Mini Me (Weepu) The only reason I can see for that selection is that he knows where all the best pie shops are over there. Also an over the hill Williams, who was completely out of his depth on Saturday night. They say it was unanimous from the selectors, well perhaps we need new selectors.
29/10/2012 12:23:00 p.m.
Because Ali Williams has a lot more to give and at full fitness he is a world class player.
29/10/2012 11:55:20 a.m.
Yes, why not Andy Ellis? Maybe as he does not conceed penalties?Looking at the forwards named, getting rid of Williams, the Team is well and truly still well powered.
29/10/2012 11:45:56 a.m.
Can someone give a very valid reason why Ali Williams has been included when Steve Hansen has done very well without him (apart from "....“brings a huge mount of experience” that the younger players can feed off and learn from.")? Yet he has not played since June. Also, how long will it be before Williams sustains anothe injury to his already damaged knee?
29/10/2012 11:03:08 a.m.
it appears that the selectors are keen on players who concede penalties Barlow being the latest addition. The player has no regard for the basic rules and between him and Messam must near share some seasonal record for conceding add to those two we have woodcock the franks brothers crocket ali williams and nonu there's at least 15 points per game add to that the fact that williams was outplayed by all comers in Npc final indeed was he there? one test messam made nine large and costly errors including 3 long arm penalties. ill discipline has cost ABs a lot this year and the recent past
29/10/2012 10:57:47 a.m.
A big fan wrote:
Awesome to see Hosea Gear and Tamati Ellison given selection.
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