New Zealand head coach Steve Hansen provides match time to several under-worked members of the Rugby World Cup team if the All Blacks face Tonga in their game on Saturday at Hamilton.
Hansen has made modifications to this line-up that beat Australia 36-0 in the Bledisloe Cup Test transferring Beauden Barrett out of full-back to his preferred position at fly-half in the lack of Richie Mo’unga, who’s currently recovering from a shoulder injury.
Veteran Ben Smith, in is 80th Evaluation, contributes to his position at full-back following playing on the wing to permit Mo’unga and Barrett to feature as playmakers.
Hooker Codie Taylor, flanker Matt Todd and scrumhalf T.J. Perenara, who generally start on the seat, are promoted to the beginning 15 while Liam Coltman, the third hooker from the group, and novice back rower Luke Jacobson are named as reserves.
Uncapped fly-half Josh Ioane is also on the seat, though he’s not a member of Hansen World Cup squad.
“It’s great to get the team together and begin preparing for what will likely be a great game against Tonga,” Hansen said. “We know the Rugby World Cup is just around the corner however we are focusing on’right here, right today’
“Tonga will be targeting this game in an attempt to build momentum into their Rugby World Cup effort, so are , since it’s likely to be necessary for both teams to venture into the championship with confidence”
Siua Maile, who had been employed as a roofer prior to his selection for the Tonga team three weeks ago, will make his Test debut.
recently playing inside centre former Wallaby Cooper Vuna will begin.
New Zealand: 15 Ben Smith, 14 Sevu Reece, 13 Anton Lienert-Brown, 12 Ryan Crotty, 11 George Bridge, 10 Beauden Barrett, 9 TJ Perenara, 8 Kieran Read (c), 7 Matt Todd, 6 Ardie Savea, 5 Sam Whitelock, 4 Patrick Tuipulotu, 3 Nepo Laulala, two Codie Taylor, 1 Joe Moody.
Replacements: 16 Liam Coltman, 17 Ofa Tuungafasi, 18 Angus Ta’avao 20 Luke Jacobson. 22 Josh Ioane, 23 Jordie Barrett.
View All Blacks vs Tonga live on Sky Sports Action and Main Event from 8am on Saturday.

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