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All Blacks named for Rugby World Cup semifinal against Argentina

All Blacks selectors Ian Foster, Jason Ryan and Joe Schmidt have announced the team to take on Argentina in Friday’s Rugby World Cup semifinal in Paris.

The selectors have made two personnel changes and one positional switch to the team that took part in last week’s quarterfinal.

Samuel Whitelock and Brodie Retallick have switched roles within the match day 23 while Mark Tele’a and Samisoni Taukei’aho are the new faces, coming in for Leicester Fainga’anuku and Dane Coles.

“Rugby World Cup playoffs are a series of finals,” said head coach Ian Foster. “We know that the intensity only increases as you progress through the knockout stages and we are preparing accordingly.

“We have received amazing support from our country and fans. The atmosphere at our games has been tremendous and we want to say a huge thank you to everyone who has been a part of that.

“The team is determined to give it everything in this special occasion against Argentina who are a quality team with a proven record in Rugby World Cup playoff games. We are very respectful of that.”

Another sellout crowd of 80,000 fans is expected in Saint-Denis for what will be the third Rugby World Cup encounter between the two sides, and their second in the knockout stages.

The teams met earlier this year in Mendoza, where the All Blacks opened the Test season with a 41-12 win at Estadio Malvinas Argentinas.

All Blacks match day 23 (Test caps in brackets)

1. Ethan de Groot (20)
2. Codie Taylor (83)
3. Tyrel Lomax (30)
4. Samuel Whitelock (151)
5. Scott Barrett (67)
6. Shannon Frizell (31)
7. Sam Cane (c) (93)
8. Ardie Savea (79)
9. Aaron Smith (123)
10. Richie Mo’unga (54)
11. Mark Tele’a (7)
12. Jordie Barrett (55)
13. Rieko Ioane (67)
14. Will Jordan (29)
15. Beauden Barrett (121)

16. Samisoni Taukei’aho (28)
17. Tamaiti Williams (6)
18. Fletcher Newell (12)
19. Brodie Retallick (107)
20. Dalton Papali’i (30)
21. Finlay Christie (19)
22. Damian McKenzie (45)
23. Anton Lienert-Brown (68)

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