Changes aplenty for the All Blacks after they underwhelmed in Ian Foster’s first game in charge.

There’s a vastly different backline headlined by the return of Beauden Barrett at fullback pushing Damian McKenzie to the bench. Rieko Ioane, originally dropped to the bench, now misses out entirely through injury with Anton Lienert-Brown lining up at outside centre. Caleb Clarke makes his run-on debut on the left wing with George Bridge suffering a nasty pec injury in training.

In the pack, Tupou Vaa’i makes his first start in place of Sam Whitelock who has not cleared HIA protocols, while Dane Coles replaces Codie Taylor as hooker.

In the reserves, there’s a debut looming for Alex Hodgman.

Assistant coach John Plumtree indicated the All Blacks have not shied away from critiquing last week’s showing. “The boys have been pretty hard on themselves around that,” he said. “The reason for that is that they’ve got their standards that they want to bring to any big contest and if those standards aren’t reached, then you’re going to get a reaction like that.”

Head coach Ian Foster is expecting a response. “It was our first Test together last weekend and while there were some aspects of our game that we were pretty excited about, especially around our set piece, we didn’t get the performance that we wanted, so there has been plenty for us to work on,” he said. “We need to be smarter with our ball and more focussed defensively.”

1.Joe Moody, 2.Dane Coles, 3.Ofa Tuungafasi, 4.Patrick Tuipulotu, 5.Tupou Vaa’i, 6.Shannon Frizell, 7.Sam Cane (captain), 8.Ardie Savea, 9.Aaron Smith, 10.Richie Mo’unga, 11.Caleb Clarke, 12.Jack Goodhue, 13.Anton Lienert-Brown, 14.Jordie Barrett, 15.Beauden Barrett.

Substitutes: 16.Codie Taylor, 17.Alex Hodgman, 18.Nepo Laulala, 19.Scott Barrett, 20.Hoskins Sotutu, 21.TJ Perenara, 22.Peter Umaga-Jensen, 23.Damian McKenzie.

Debutant Alex Hodgman has an infectious smile and, based on how open he was in his his earliest TV interview, a terrific attitude.


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