All Blacks face Wallabies again on Sunday

Ioane dropped, Barrett returns for second Bledisloe Cup Test

The All Blacks' Beauden Barrett runs through drills during a training session at Eden Park on Friday, in Auckland, New Zealand
WORLD STAR: The All Blacks' Beauden Barrett runs through drills during a training session at Eden Park on Friday, in Auckland, New Zealand

All Blacks back Rieko Ioane, whose sloppy grounding cost his team a try in the drawn first Bledisloe Cup Test, has been dropped from the starting side for Sunday’s second clash against Australia.

The outside centre, who crossed the line on the stroke of halftime last weekend but failed to ground the ball properly, has been dropped to the bench for the clash with the Wallabies at Eden Park.

Anton Lienert-Brown replaced Ioane at outside centre, as coach Ian Foster made four changes to his starting line-up from the disappointing 16-16 draw in Wellington last Sunday.

“It was our first Test together last weekend and while there were some aspects of our game that we were pretty excited about ... we didn’t get the performance that we wanted,” Foster said.

Twice world Player of the Year Beauden Barrett, a late injury withdrawal from the first Test, returned at fullback in place of Damian McKenzie.

Despite some criticism of his display last week, Richie Mo’unga retains the number 10 shirt as starting flyhalf, while Barrett’s brother Jordie remains on the right wing.

In other backline changes, Caleb Clarke will make his first Test start on the left wing, in place of George Bridge, who has been sidelined for up to six weeks with a chest injury.

Injury has also handed lock Tupou Vaa’i his first run-on start in place of Sam Whitelock, who was ruled out of the Eden Park match because of a concussion.

Dane Coles replaces Codie Taylor at hooker, with the latter dropping to the bench alongside uncapped prop Alex Hodgman and lock Scott Barrett, who returns after a four-month injury layoff.

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

Replacements: 16-Codie Taylor, 17-Alex Hodgman, 18-Nepo Laulala, 19-Scott Barrett, 20-Hoskins Sotutu, 21-TJ Perenara, 22-Rieko Ioane, 23-Damian McKenzie.

Meanwhile, Australia coach Dave Rennie has dropped number eight Pete Samu in a back row reshuffle for Sunday’s second Bledisloe Cup clash against New Zealand, while hooker Folau Fainga’a has also been axed after struggling with his line-out throwing in Wellington.

Brandon Paenga-Amosa will win his fifth cap in the middle of the front row, while Ned Hanigan has been named to start at blindside flanker, shifting rookie Harry Wilson to number eight.

Fainga’a’s failure to hit his line-out targets early in last weekend’s thrilling 16-16 draw cost the Wallabies points and Rennie said he was a “casualty” of that.

“Obviously the line-out didn’t function as well last week,” the New Zealander told reporters on Friday.

“We’ve had a big focus on earning the right to play.”

Paenga-Amosa edges out reserve hooker Jordan Uelese for the Eden Park match, despite his own throwing troubles for the Queensland Reds during Super Rugby AU.

“He’s certainly a very strong scrummager as well, Brandon, a good athlete and we think he’s the right man for the job this weekend,” Rennie said.

While Samu had some decent carries in Wellington, Rennie said he had not met standards, adding that Hanigan would help stiffen the line-out.

“He’s got a good skill-set and provides a point of difference for us at six,” he said.

There was no change to a backline that impressed in Wellington but centre Jordan Petaia was named on the bench after recovering from a hip flexor injury, tipping out uncapped flyhalf Noah Lolesio.

Reds skipper Liam Wright replaces reserve backrower Rob Valetini.

Australia have not won at Eden Park since 1986 and are expecting a backlash from Ian Foster’s All Blacks, who have endured a week of criticism from home media.

“You play the All Blacks and you’re a couple of cogs off, you get hammered — as we’ve seen with a number of the best sides in the world,” Rennie said.

“We need to make sure that we’re stepping up our game and can deal with the intensity.”

Team: 15-Tom Banks, 14-Filipo Daugunu, 13-Hunter Paisami, 12-Matt Toomua, 11-Marika Koroibete, 10-James O’Connor, 9-Nic White, 8-Harry Wilson, 7-Michael Hooper (captain), 6-Ned Hanigan, 5-Matt Philip, 4-Lukhan Salakaia-Loto, 3-Taniela Tupou, 2-Brandon Paenga-Amosa, 1-James Slipper.

Replacements: 16-Jordan Uelese, 17-Scott Sio, 18-Allan Alaalatoa, 19-Rob Simmons, 20-Liam Wright, 21-Jake Gordon, 22-Jordan Petaia, 23-Reece Hodge.


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