Richard Ferguson

Changes aplenty for AB’s

Written by Richard Ferguson (Richard Ferguson)

Posted in :All Blacks, End of Year Tour, Original Content on 10 Nov 2016 at 09:13
Tagged with : , , , , , ,

All Blacks coach Steve Hansen has made several changes to his team that face Italy this weekend. Several might be an understatement, he has made 12 changes to the starting 15 alone.

Many might see this as a direct result of their loss to Ireland last weekend, but I reckon many of these changes would have been made regardless. It’s not a question of undermining Italy, stranger this have happened, but more likely a coach looking at fringe players after a long year of rugby, as one should.

For all the changes made, there are only two possible debutants, Liam Coltman and Rieko Ioane coming onto the bench to cover hooker and the outside backs respectively.

Codie Taylor starts in the front row with Wyatt Crockett and Charlie Faumuina on either side of him. It is a new look second row with Scott Barrett, after making his debut off the bench last week, given the nod to start alongside Patrick Tuipulotu.

Sam Cane will captain the team from the side of the scrum, completing a loose trio with Elliot Dixon and Steven Luatua.

The halfbacks will be Tawera Kerr-Barlow and Aaron Cruden, while the impressive Anton Lienert-Brown continues in midfield alongside Malakai Fekitoa. Damian McKenzie gets his first ever start in an All Black jersey starting at fullback, while Waisake Naholo and Israel Dagg complete the back three.

The rest of the bench include Joe Moody and Ofa Tu’ungafasi covering the front row, Brodie Retallick and Matt Todd completing the forwards cover. Aaron Smith and Lima Sopoaga cover the halfbacks while Ioane is sure to come onto the field at some point.

New Zealand: 15 Damian McKenzie, 14 Israel Dagg, 13 Malakai Fekitoa, 12 Anton Lienert-Brown, 11 Waisake Naholo, 10 Aaron Cruden, 9 Tawera Kerr-Barlow, 8 Steven Luatua, 7 Sam Cane (captain), 6 Elliot Dixon, 5 Scott Barrett, 4 Patrick Tuipulotu, 3 Charlie Faumuina, 2 Codie Taylor, 1 Wyatt Crockett

Substitutes: 16 Liam Coltman, 17 Joe Moody, 18 Ofa Tu’ungafasi, 19 Brodie Retallick, 20 Matt Todd, 21 Aaron Smith, 22 Lima Sopoaga, 23 Rieko Ioane


  • Thats a decent team showing that there is a lot of depth in the All Blacks BUT it is also a very untested lineup and under pressure they could be in trouble. Problem is i cant see Italy putting them under any pressure. The narrow pitches in Italy will help the home side a bit but cant see the ABs winning by less than 30pts

  • Comment 1, posted at 10.11.16 09:24:52 by SheldonK Reply
  • @SheldonK (Comment 1) :

    I think regardless of what happened last weekend, they would have given the rest of the squad a run. This is what these tours are for, building your depth and testing combinations. And all their pressure is off now, no more record hanging over their heads, so they can really just go for it..

  • Comment 2, posted at 10.11.16 09:32:47 by Richard Ferguson Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld Richard Ferguson
  • Notice the grooming of Kieran Reads successor 3 or 4 years out. Who is captaining the springboks again next year?

  • Comment 3, posted at 10.11.16 09:52:20 by West Indies Cricket Board Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld West Indies Cricket Board
  • @West Indies Cricket Board (Comment 3) : I still think that is the main ingredient of their recipe for continuous (mostly thanks to the Irish) success – succession planning on coaching and player level.

    That and equipping the players with the skills the play any type of game.

  • Comment 4, posted at 10.11.16 10:09:25 by Bokhoring Reply
  • @Richard Ferguson (Comment 2) : Oh ya i agree this was the team that was always going to play the Italy game pretty much. Italy have been pretty poor of late and seem to be regressing. If Italy played on wider fields i think they would be even more exposed. Still think that AB lineup could be very exposed under pressure- lots of weak areas for a capable team to attack.

  • Comment 5, posted at 10.11.16 10:10:22 by SheldonK Reply
  • @Bokhoring (Comment 4) : oh you mean common sense and logic. Who wouldve thought? Lol

  • Comment 6, posted at 10.11.16 10:11:55 by West Indies Cricket Board Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld West Indies Cricket Board
  • @West Indies Cricket Board (Comment 6) : It is also a lot easier for succession planning to have the same management team in place for 8+ years…

  • Comment 7, posted at 10.11.16 10:23:11 by SheldonK Reply
  • @Bokhoring (Comment 4) : The main ingredient for their success is that they have one single criteria for their selection process, only choose the best man,and if you don’t perform you get dropped no matter who you are.

  • Comment 8, posted at 10.11.16 11:26:36 by The hound Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld The hound
  • Guys there is a high probability of the bok pack to look like this :

  • Comment 9, posted at 10.11.16 11:53:23 by schrodingers cat Reply
    schrodingers cat
  • @schrodingers cat (Comment 9) :

  • Comment 10, posted at 10.11.16 11:55:05 by schrodingers cat Reply
    schrodingers cat
  • @schrodingers cat (Comment 9) : Shouldnt it be Strauss not Marx? Whilst the loose trio personnel wouldnt be my choice i do see the merit in picking those type of players knowing that the only way the Boks will win is if our forwards get over the advantage line and disrupt the England pack

  • Comment 11, posted at 10.11.16 12:00:17 by SheldonK Reply
  • @SheldonK (Comment 11) : So you would pick nizaam carr at flank with mohoje and let them get bulied like they did against the barbarians?? . JLDP has no experiance to start in such an important match so he is out of the equation.Who will youre “choice”loose trio be then picking from the current squad????.

  • Comment 12, posted at 10.11.16 12:10:18 by schrodingers cat Reply
    schrodingers cat
  • @schrodingers cat (Comment 12) : I wouldnt have picked Mahoje or Carr. I would have gone with JL Dup, Alberts and Whiteley. So with Strauss capt i would have gone with :
    1. Beast 2. Strauss 3. Koch 4. Etzebeth 5. PSDT 6. DuPreez 7. Alberts 8. Whiteley.

  • Comment 13, posted at 10.11.16 12:20:36 by SheldonK Reply
    this is really worth a read,it kind of confirms a lot of things and it comes from a respected source.

  • Comment 14, posted at 10.11.16 13:29:03 by The hound Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld The hound
  • @The hound (Comment 14) : I think what he says does have merit.

  • Comment 15, posted at 10.11.16 13:55:31 by SheldonK Reply
  • @SheldonK (Comment 15) : Totally also confirms why guys like Duanne,Jannie,Brussow,Frans are not with the team

  • Comment 16, posted at 10.11.16 14:00:08 by The hound Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld The hound
  • @The hound (Comment 16) : To an extent. I still think a big part of it is pressure from their clubs. I can put money on it that if they dont play international rugby their club contracts are higher.

  • Comment 17, posted at 10.11.16 14:07:35 by SheldonK Reply
  • @SheldonK (Comment 17) : I think you are wrong clubs want players to shine on International stage, its good for them.

  • Comment 18, posted at 10.11.16 14:11:45 by The hound Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld The hound
  • @The hound (Comment 18) : Not a chance, not sure where you get that from. Clubs hate releasing players hence all then tension in Eng and France regarding players being released etc. Clubs dont want players playing any international rugby as it raises the injury risk. Also players then return tired. There are also numerous accounts of players coming out and saying the clubs have put pressure on them to retire from International rugby- Leigh Halfpenny the latest to say it.

  • Comment 19, posted at 10.11.16 14:17:34 by SheldonK Reply
  • @SheldonK (Comment 19) : The entire French national team plays club rugby in France,do you think the same pressure is put on them.
    Our players problems are as Hennie says alack of respect for the amateur coaching staff Coetzee has surrounded himself with.
    I have an enormous amount of respect for Hennie.

  • Comment 20, posted at 10.11.16 14:24:13 by The hound Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld The hound
  • @The hound (Comment 20) : Yes the same pressures are put on them in terms of being released etc. Not to the same extent as the foreigners but yes. Lack of respect may be a factor but if its the only factor i will lose all respect for those players. The issues with Toulon releasing Habana and Vermuelen for camps etc points to major pressure from the clubs, our guys just dont speak out as Halfpenny did.

  • Comment 21, posted at 10.11.16 14:27:12 by SheldonK Reply
  • @SheldonK (Comment 21) : The issue is that the club won’t release the player unless the home country picks up the players insurance, which means if the player is incapacitated in any way then the club will be reimbursed.The Boks probably don’t want to cover that.The club is then loathe to let its expensive assets out.

  • Comment 22, posted at 10.11.16 14:34:26 by The hound Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld The hound
  • @The hound (Comment 22) : Thats probably part of the case yes, and i can see the argument from both sides. The players also dont want to piss off their clubs as thats their big payday, playing international rugby isnt.

  • Comment 23, posted at 10.11.16 14:42:03 by SheldonK Reply
  • @SheldonK (Comment 23) : Thats the difference between us and the AB’s,to them being an All Black is the ultimate worth more than money, our guys unfortunately in the last few years value money over national glory.We have lost respect for the jersey.

  • Comment 24, posted at 10.11.16 14:47:22 by The hound Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld The hound
  • @The hound (Comment 24) : It is a lot easier for them to say that when their currency is 10 times stronger than ours. Offer those guys 13 times their current ZN pay and see how ‘loyal’ they are to the black jersey. Im not saying its all about the money but it makes a huge difference.

  • Comment 25, posted at 10.11.16 14:51:53 by SheldonK Reply
  • @SheldonK (Comment 25) : I don’t think there is one guy in that AB’s team that would take money before the jersey, it means everything to them because only the very best get to wear it, that includes coaching staff.

  • Comment 26, posted at 10.11.16 14:59:56 by The hound Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld The hound
  • @The hound (Comment 26) : I think its easy to say that when the option of 13 times their salary is not there. Only if the option was realistic could we say for certain. Otherwise its speculation. Would top Bok players move to play in Europe for only 1.5 times their salary in SA? I highly doubt it.

  • Comment 27, posted at 10.11.16 15:03:23 by SheldonK Reply
  • Guys bok team is out:pack was exactly like i predicted

  • Comment 28, posted at 10.11.16 15:06:04 by schrodingers cat Reply
    schrodingers cat
  • @schrodingers cat (Comment 28) : All except you had Marx 😉

  • Comment 29, posted at 10.11.16 15:07:47 by SheldonK Reply
  • @SheldonK (Comment 29) : lol yeah i screwd up there 🙂

  • Comment 30, posted at 10.11.16 15:09:02 by schrodingers cat Reply
    schrodingers cat
  • @schrodingers cat (Comment 30) : Blame autocorrect :mrgreen:

  • Comment 31, posted at 10.11.16 15:10:16 by SheldonK Reply
  • @SheldonK (Comment 27) : Guys like C.J Stander moved before he even had a Bok jersey, can you honestly see a guy likeSam Cane doing that.

  • Comment 32, posted at 10.11.16 15:11:08 by The hound Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld The hound
  • Very big pack but also not the most mobile! Hope that does not come back to bite the Bokke at the break downs!

  • Comment 33, posted at 10.11.16 15:17:25 by JD Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld JD
  • @The hound (Comment 32) : Thats like comparing gold bars and apples. If Sam Cane was down the pecking order at the same time as CJ Stander was and long came that possible paycheque…would be very interesting to see if he would have turned it down.

  • Comment 34, posted at 10.11.16 15:21:22 by SheldonK Reply
  • @SheldonK (Comment 27) : waisting your time trying to explain the deference in exchange rate, been over this on numerous other articles but for some it’s still only a “loyalty” thing!

  • Comment 35, posted at 10.11.16 15:21:47 by JD Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld JD
  • @SheldonK (Comment 34) : Off course he was around then and behind Read and McCaw, in the pecking order you can bet who ever it was who scouted Stander also scouted Cane.
    It all comes down to one things hunger for that black jersey and Stander’s lack of respect for what the Bok jersey has become.
    But hey you believe,what you will,Have either you or J.D been to New Zealand.
    Maybe you should go and see exactly what it means over there to be an All Black.I can assure you money has not a lot to do with it.

  • Comment 36, posted at 10.11.16 15:34:32 by The hound Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld The hound
  • @The hound (Comment 36) : Im not saying the Black jersey doesnt mean a lot to them. All im saying is you cannot compare due to monetary values involved. Its just speculation. If Sa players earned only 1.5 times an SA salary in Europe i can bet you now there would be a significantly lower number of them playing overseas right now. Would the NZ players play for free in NZ? if the answer is absolutely yes then they are the most loyal…if not then the argument holds no water.

  • Comment 37, posted at 10.11.16 15:43:05 by SheldonK Reply
  • @The hound (Comment 36) : I might know a bit more of NZ than you think. My brother is living there for almost 20 years so I know all about the passion for the jersey.
    I also know that living in SA is WAY different from living in NZ. Salaries, car prices, food prices, life style, safety, etc differs greatly from SA!
    Any way it’s not as if all NZ players stay in NZ to play for the black jersey. Players like Japanese captain Leich and other before and after him made moves to play international rugby for other countries.
    Comparing number of players leaving SA vs NZ is not as easy as just saying “loyalty”! Have you looked at how many SA citizens are emigrating vs NZ?!?!?! But like you said believe what you want to!!!

  • Comment 38, posted at 10.11.16 15:50:36 by JD Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld JD
  • @JD (Comment 38) : You are saying what I am saying, there is no way that C.J Stander would have left New Zealand if he was a Kiwi with his talent, and I reckon he would have played for free as long as it meant that he would one day wear the black.

  • Comment 39, posted at 10.11.16 15:58:38 by The hound Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld The hound
  • @The hound (Comment 39) : Yes im sure most professionals would play for free because they are loyal. Think you are stretching it a bit now. You want to see how loyal SA players are and how much they love they jersey…offer them 13 times their current pay and you will get some seriously loyal guys staying here.

  • Comment 40, posted at 10.11.16 16:04:28 by SheldonK Reply
  • @SheldonK (Comment 40) : Have it your way but I still feel that a guy like Duanne Vermullen was in it for more than just money.He must have been very disillusioned by players, coaching staff and officials totally unqualified to represent the standards of a Bok jersey,to refuse to play for the Boks.

  • Comment 41, posted at 10.11.16 16:10:49 by The hound Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld The hound
  • @The hound (Comment 41) : Vermuelen left Free State for money…he left WP for money. Yes he has pride in the jersey and for his country but he is a professional and also wants to earn the best living as we all do in our jobs.

  • Comment 42, posted at 10.11.16 16:25:36 by SheldonK Reply
  • @The hound (Comment 39) : yes 100% correct just like Leitch stayed in NZ to play for free and just like you worked for 40 odd years for free not bothering about a little thing called money!!! 100% the same!!!
    If you want loyalty buy a dog I work for money!!!

  • Comment 43, posted at 10.11.16 16:26:43 by JD Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld JD
  • @SheldonK (Comment 42) : no he left Cheetahs as he had more pride in the WP jersey and then left WP as he had more pride in the Toulon jersey!
    Want to talk loyalty then no 1 must be Beast!!!! Staying with the Sharks because they gave him a chance and staying to play for his adopted country without bitching and moaning about how shit the Bokke management is!

  • Comment 44, posted at 10.11.16 16:28:50 by JD Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld JD
  • This side will crunch Italy…

  • Comment 45, posted at 10.11.16 18:21:24 by pastorshark Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld pastorshark

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