Steve Hansen has decided to mix up his New Zealand side for the third Test with France, naming two debutants as starters having already secured the series.
The All Blacks twice benefited from refereeing calls that impacted the visitors – a controversial sin-binning in the opener followed by Benjamin Fall’s red card last weekend – as they clinched back-to-back wins, with Hansen naming an unchanged side for both those matches.
However, with Beauden Barrett injured in the second match, meaning the fly-half will not be risked for the clash in Dunedin, Hansen has made a series of changes.
Shannon Frizell comes straight in for his first international start in the back row, while Jack Goodhue makes his debut in the centres next to Sonny Bill Williams, who returns after making a swift recovery following knee surgery.
Jackson Hemopo and Richie Mo’unga could also make their maiden appearances, with the pair both selected on the bench.
“One of the aims of the series was to continue to build depth across our squad and give players opportunities,” Hansen said.
“Now that we have secured the Dave Gallaher Trophy and won the series, we think this is the right time to do that.
“It’s an exciting mix of players with big-match experience, newer All Blacks who are continuing to grow their game and four players who have been named in the Test 23 for the first time.”
WATCH | Steve Hansen talks through the selection of four debutants to face France in the final Test of the #SteinlagerSeries
— All Blacks (@AllBlacks) June 20, 2018
New Zealand: Ben Smith, Waisake Naholo, Jack Goodhue, Sonny Bill Williams, Rieko Ioane, Damian McKenzie, Aaron Smith; Joe Moody, Codie Taylor, Owen Franks, Sam Whitelock, Scott Barrett, Shannon Frizell, Ardie Savea, Luke Whitelock.
Replacements: Liam Coltman, Karl Tu’inukuafe, Ofa Tu’ungafasi, Jackson Hemopo, Matt Todd, TJ Perenara, Richie Mo’unga, Jordie Barrett.
KEO.co.za News wire is powered by opta