Richard Ferguson

Sonny Bill dropped in one of 5 changes

Written by Richard Ferguson (Richard Ferguson)

Posted in :All Blacks, Original Content on 18 Nov 2010 at 10:04
Tagged with : , , ,

Richie McCaw will continue his record-breaking spree when he leads a much-changed New Zealand team out against Ireland in Dublin on Saturday.The match – the All Blacks’ fourth on their year-end tour and third in their attempt to win another ‘grand slam’ – will see the Kiwi captain, McCaw, and fullback Mils Muliaina play their 93rd Tests.

This will make them the most capped All Blacks of all time, after equalling former All Black captain Sean Fitzpatrick’s record last weekend in the 49-3 rout of Scotland. As well as McCaw and Muliaina’s milestone, lock Brad Thorn will play his 50th Test in an All Blacks career which began back in 2003. Thorn has been named at lock, despite missing part of Wednesday’s training – when he had ice applied to a troublesome hamstring.

The starting XV features five changes from the team that smashed Scotland: lock Tom Donnelly gets his first start since the All Blacks Test against Australia in Hong Kong, Jerome Kaino returns to blindside flank with Liam Messam moving to the bench, Andy Ellis, who came off the bench last week, starts at scrumhalf, Ma’a Nonu returns to his familiar No.12 jersey partnering Conrad Smith in the centres, with Sonny Bill Williams on the bench, while Cory Jane has recovered from his chest and shoulder injuries and will start on the right wing.

Coach Graham Henry said he wanted to keep changes to the minimum for the sake of continuity.

Meanwhile, the All Blacks reached several milestones in last weekend’s rout of Scotland: Daniel Carter’s try gave the All Blacks exactly 12,000 points in their 470 Tests – and they finished the match with 12,037 points (the All Blacks have scored an average of 25.6 points in all Test matches).

As well, Carter now has 1158 points in Test matches – just 20 points short of Jonny Wilkinson’s 1178 points.

The win in Scotland was also Graham Henry’s 99th Test victory (76 with the All Blacks, 22 with Wales and one with the British & Irish Lions).

The All Blacks have played Ireland 23 times since 1905 with the Irish yet to win a Test.

The last Test against Ireland was the encounter in New Plymouth earlier this year, which the All Blacks won 66–28.

The All Blacks last played Ireland in Dublin in 2008 at Croke Park with the All Blacks 22–3 victors on that occasion.

New Zealand: 15 Mils Muliaina, 14 Cory Jane, 13 Conrad Smith, 12 Ma’a Nonu, 11 Hosea Gear, 10 Daniel Carter, 9 Andy Ellis, 8 Kieran Read, 7 Richie McCaw (captain), 6 Jerome Kaino, 5 Tom Donnelly, 4 Brad Thorn, 3 Owen Franks, 2 Hikawera Elliot, 1 Tony Woodcock.

Replacements: 16 Andrew Hore, 17 John Afoa, 18 Anthony Boric, 19 Liam Messam, 20 Alby Mathewson, 21 Stephen Donald, 22 Sonny Bill Williams.


  • Afraid the SBW bubble will burst against better centers?

  • Comment 1, posted at 18.11.10 10:19:49 by Morné Reply
  • @Morné (Comment 1) :

    Do you think he is dropped or is it some form of rotation?

  • Comment 2, posted at 18.11.10 10:21:32 by Richard Ferguson Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld Richard Ferguson
  • @Richard Ferguson (Comment 2) :

    Does he need rest after a few club games and two tests?

  • Comment 3, posted at 18.11.10 10:23:20 by Morné Reply
  • Surely they know what Nonu and Smith brings to the party, I would have imagined SBW would need as much exposure at this level as possible given the amount of hype they have given the situation and individual

  • Comment 4, posted at 18.11.10 10:24:14 by Morné Reply
  • @Morné (Comment 3) :

    Exactly my thinking.. But maybe its more a case of the other two centres wanting game time?

  • Comment 5, posted at 18.11.10 10:24:36 by Richard Ferguson Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld Richard Ferguson
  • @Richard Ferguson (Comment 5) :

    Or that Ireland is not Scotland. And given they were lucky against England in my view, a win is what they are after.

  • Comment 6, posted at 18.11.10 10:30:58 by Morné Reply
  • @Morné (Comment 6) :

    Good point..

    And I agree with you that Henry knows how Nonu and Smith play, why keep SBW on the bench then?

  • Comment 7, posted at 18.11.10 10:32:32 by Richard Ferguson Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld Richard Ferguson
  • @Richard Ferguson (Comment 7) :

    I would, but that’s just me.

    A win comes first, always.

  • Comment 8, posted at 18.11.10 10:36:06 by Morné Reply
  • @Morné (Comment 8) :

    Again I have to agree.. you have to win..

    Hope our coach thinks like that before England

  • Comment 9, posted at 18.11.10 10:38:13 by Richard Ferguson Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld Richard Ferguson
  • Perhaps it is a strategy by Henry. If I was Henry and I had a prodigy that had been unearthed less then a year before a RWC I may be tempted to keep him out of the limelight until the event.

    Think of South Africa prodigies like Russell and Steyn, who had one or 2 blinding games where they almost single handedly beat the opposition. There after with opposition video analysts studying their every move and weakness and developing counter measures they were a lot less effective. Even in the 1995 RWC, SA had the strategy in place by the time of the final to make Lomu ineffective.

  • Comment 10, posted at 18.11.10 10:44:24 by Dive Pass Reply
    Dive Pass
  • ….and before some All Black supporter chirps, no the SA strategy against Lomu wasn’t Suzy 😉

  • Comment 11, posted at 18.11.10 10:49:27 by Dive Pass Reply
    Dive Pass
  • @Dive Pass (Comment 11) : YOU have had me very worried! Where the hell have you been for the last 6 months?

  • Comment 12, posted at 18.11.10 10:54:21 by robdylan Reply
  • Hi Rob, perhaps it was even longer…..avoiding procrastinating and getting drawn into circular argument on rugby blogs 😉

  • Comment 13, posted at 18.11.10 10:58:37 by Dive Pass Reply
    Dive Pass
  • @Dive Pass (Comment 10) : @Dive Pass (Comment 11) : Jeepers Dive Pass…where in the world have you been? 😀

  • Comment 14, posted at 18.11.10 11:00:15 by Pokkel Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld
  • @Dive Pass (Comment 13) : I think it was longer! I was starting to think it was something I said…

    So what made you decide to come back?

  • Comment 15, posted at 18.11.10 11:09:11 by robdylan Reply
  • Pokkel I thought better come back and balance things up , all these WP supporters seem to be getting a bit “otherwise” since the the 30th October 2010…..wonder why? 🙂

  • Comment 16, posted at 18.11.10 11:10:09 by Dive Pass Reply
    Dive Pass
  • @Dive Pass (Comment 16) : Good on you!! Welcome back

  • Comment 17, posted at 18.11.10 11:11:12 by Pokkel Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld
  • @Dive Pass (Comment 16) : yeah – welcome back. Time to work on that fifth star!

  • Comment 18, posted at 18.11.10 11:16:29 by robdylan Reply
  • @robdylan (Comment 18) :

    Thanks… I was actually hoping to be an under 21, it may have fooled people into not realising what an old ballie I am.

  • Comment 19, posted at 18.11.10 11:21:29 by Dive Pass Reply
    Dive Pass
  • @Dive Pass (Comment 19) : your spelling is too good 🙂

  • Comment 20, posted at 18.11.10 11:24:31 by robdylan Reply
  • GH wanted to try out SBW @ flank…if i was an AB flank i would be well pissed off…BUT…they can be number 1 and do what they wants…at the end of the day they not going to win the RWC in NZ…

  • Comment 21, posted at 18.11.10 11:28:19 by Barrel Reply
  • Seems as though you are right, Barrel, comments in the NZ Herald before the Scotland game:
    “That’s seemingly incongruous notion has been floated since the Bulldogs ball-playing second rower abandoned the National Rugby League for French rugby in 2008 – and All Blacks assistant coach Wayne gave the concept further credence today.

    The All Blacks coaches have been so impressed with the 25-year-old’s physical attributes, Smith envisaged Williams could be utilised on the blindside flank of a Crusaders loose trio already comprising Kieran Read and Richie McCaw.

    “During Super rugby he may have a crack at other positions, he had six weeks at (No) 6 for Toulon,” said Smith as the squad adjusted to a frigid Edinburgh ahead of Sunday’s (NZT) test with Scotland at Murrayfield.

    “He’s a different sort of athlete, he’s an athlete where we’ve just go to see what best suits him – and the team.”

    Williams’ trial on the side of the scrum in France was not considered a success and he reverted to his preferred role in midfield – the ideal setting for his inevitable tackle-busts and freakish offloads.”

  • Comment 22, posted at 18.11.10 11:39:55 by Dive Pass Reply
    Dive Pass
  • @Dive Pass (Comment 13) :

    Hi Dive Pass..

    It must have been quite a while, I have never seen you on the site, and I have been here a while now?!

    Pleased to meet you

  • Comment 23, posted at 18.11.10 11:47:52 by Richard Ferguson Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld Richard Ferguson
  • Hi Richard thanks for the welcome….. ja it was a long time ago, I think it was just after Edison eventually got the light bulb right.

  • Comment 24, posted at 18.11.10 11:51:56 by Dive Pass Reply
    Dive Pass
  • Welcome back Dive Pass!! 😉
    What’s that you were saying about WP supporters?? 😈

  • Comment 25, posted at 18.11.10 11:59:41 by wpw Reply
  • @wpw (Comment 25) :

    Hey Wpw…..what can I say, too much grumpiness on this site recently, its almost becoming like a real family. Quite patently it can only be the WP supporters faults. I mean I blame you guys for everything dating back to that snake in the garden.

  • Comment 26, posted at 18.11.10 12:08:02 by Dive Pass Reply
    Dive Pass
  • Lol. :mrgreen:

  • Comment 27, posted at 18.11.10 12:10:32 by wpw Reply
  • @Dive Pass (Comment 26) :

    Can’t be WP’s fault, they buy and sell their apples, nothing is produced locally.

  • Comment 28, posted at 18.11.10 12:12:26 by Morné Reply
  • @Morné (Comment 28) :


    ….oh yes that is another to add to my list of things I hold against WP….lack of good apples in SA, because they export all the good ones.

  • Comment 29, posted at 18.11.10 12:18:50 by Dive Pass Reply
    Dive Pass
  • Greetings from a very jet-lagged bugger! 4am here, but my biological clock is cooked.

    I see the SBW hype machine keeps on rolling. I though SA had a monopoly on turning individual players into Gods? Frans Steyn, Tiger Pienaar, Bobby Skinstad etc.

    NZ have in Snith one of the very best 13’s in world rugby – they are so dunb to screw him around for a guy whose sole claim to fame seems to be being able to pass one-handed.

    Good for us of course.

  • Comment 30, posted at 18.11.10 13:32:58 by Big Fish Reply
    Big Fish
  • @Big Fish (Comment 30) : I agree with you on SBW. For all the hype that’s been going on, I must say I just don’t particularly get it!

  • Comment 31, posted at 18.11.10 13:43:00 by Letgo Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld Letgo
  • What a position to be in.

    Drop one centre SA could only dream of having for an even better one!

  • Comment 32, posted at 18.11.10 13:46:32 by Original Champion Reply
    Original Pierre

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