Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 25 October 2014

All Blacks name strong line-up

New Zealand coach Steve Hansen has named an experienced line-up for Saturday's Test with France.

New Zealand will field their best possible pack in Saturday's Test with France at Stade de France in Paris.

Three Test centurions, captain Richie McCaw (121), hooker Keven Mealamu (108) and prop Tony Woodcock (105) contribute most to the 853 caps in the scrum.

First five-eighths Daniel Carter will make his 99th Test appearance while outside him Ma'a Nonu will play his 86th Test.

Illness has prevented Julian Savea being named and his place on the wing has been taken by Charles Piutau, who made such an impression on the wing in last weekend's Test against Japan.

Coach Steve Hansen said: "France are one of our great rugby foes and there is a rich history of matches between our two countries, so we are certainly looking forward to this weekend.

"The full squad has come together well after the Japan Test and are united with a common purpose - to play well on this European tour and put in performances that we can all be proud of.

"But we know this weekend's Test won't be easy - the French will come at us with real physicality, passion and something new."

The Dave Gallaher Trophy, contested between the two countries, will also be on the line to give the game an extra edge.

New Zealand will wear their white strip for the game and it will feature a red poppy on the sleeve to mark Armistice Day on November 11.

Team: Dagg; Jane, Smith, Nonu, Piutau; Carter, Smith; Woodcock, Mealamu, Franks, Retallick, Whitelock, Messam, McCaw (capt), Read

Replacements: Coles, Crockett, Faumuina, Luatua, Cane, Kerr-Barlow, Cruden, Crotty.

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