The Blues’ Charlie Faumuina has been named in the All Blacks squad announced this morning. Photo / NZPA, Wayne Drought
Blues prop Charlie Faumuina is the only new cap to be named in the new All Blacks squad, while wing Zac Guildford and prop Ben Tameifuna are among those to have missed out.
All Blacks head coach Steve Hansen and his fellow selectors, assistant coach Ian Foster and former All Black Grant Fox, made the squad announcement for the Investec Rugby Championship this morning.
Faumuina was part of the All Blacks’ wider training group for the Steinlager Series tests against Ireland in June, but missed selection then due to injury.
“We would like to congratulate Charlie on his selection. He had to wait a while to get over his calf injury before he could be selected officially in the All Blacks, so it will be exciting for him and his family,” Hansen said.
“He’s an outstanding front rower and we look forward to seeing him play at the next level.”
The newly-named squad also sees the return of Hurricanes and Wellington outside back Cory Jane, who missed the Steinlager Series with an ankle injury, while Waikato and Chiefs loose forward Liam Messam, who was called into the Steinlager Series squad as an injury replacement, has also been selected.
An injury replacement for Conrad Smith will be confirmed next week, with 17-test All Black Sonny Bill Williams the likely player once arrangements have been finalised.
Players not considered for selection due to injury include Anthony Boric (neck), Jerome Kaino (shoulder), Colin Slade (leg), Richard Kahui (shoulder) and Ali Williams (knee).
The squad is made up of 16 forwards and 12 backs with a combined total of 879 test caps and will again be captained by 106-test All Blacks Captain Richie McCaw, with Daniel Carter his vice-captain.
Hookers: Andrew Hore, Keven Mealamu
Props: Wyatt Crockett, Charlie Faumuina, Ben Franks, Owen Franks, Tony Woodcock
Locks: Brodie Retallick, Luke Romano, Samuel Whitelock
Loose forwards: Sam Cane, Richie McCaw (C), Liam Messam, Kieran Read, Adam Thomson, Victor Vito
Halfbacks : Aaron Smith, Piri Weepu
First five-eighths: Daniel Carter, Aaron Cruden
Midfielders: Tamati Ellison, Ma’a Nonu, Conrad Smith
Outside backs: Israel Dagg, Hosea Gear, Cory Jane, Ben Smith, Julian Savea