Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 24 April 2014

All Blacks ring the changes

Dan Carter has been named in New Zealand's starting line-up

New Zealand have made 10 changes for the EMC Test with Scotland, but captain Richie McCaw and fly-half Dan Carter will start Sunday's clash.

The All Blacks play at Murrayfield eager to erase the memory of their 18-18 draw with Australia in their last Test outing on October 20. They were seeking a 17th successive win in Brisbane, but had to settle for a draw in a match which saw them fail to score a try for the first time since August 2004, a run of 105 fixtures.

"The team is excited about kicking off our tour in Scotland in front of a packed house at Murrayfield," said All Blacks head coach Steve Hansen.

"We have had a good build-up this week and the key for us has been to get our preparation spot-on so we can put in a performance on Sunday which we are proud of.

"However, we know that the Scots will lift for this Test match and we expect them to be very combative."

Carter has been paired at half-back with Piri Weepu, while Corey Jane continues on the right wing and Israel Dagg at full-back. Three players with fewer than 10 caps complete the back line; wing Julian Savea and centres Tamati Ellison and Ben Smith.

Loosehead Wyatt Crockett gets his eighth Test start in a front row which includes hooker Andrew Hore and prop Owen Franks.

Luke Romano and Sam Whitelock are in the second row, while openside flanker McCaw is joined in the back row by Adam Thomson at blindside and Victor Vito, who makes his third Test start, at number eight.

New Zealand team: I Dagg; C Jane, B Smith, T Ellison, J Savea, D Carter, P Weepu; W Crockett, A Hore, O Franks, L Romano, S Whitelock, A Thomson, R McCaw (captain), V Vito.

Replacements: D Coles, T Woodcock, B Franks, A Williams, S Cane, T Kerr-Barlow, B Barrett, M Nonu.