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Carter blow for All Blacks

New Zealand fly-half Dan Carter has been withdrawn from the team for Saturday's Rugby Championship Test against Argentina due to a calf strain.

The 30-year-old had hoped to be involved against the Pumas in Wellington despite struggling with the injury all week, but it became clear today that he would have to sit out the match.

All Blacks coach Steve Hansen said: "Dan has been carrying a tight left calf this week, but had been hopeful of playing.

"However, at training this morning it was apparent he would not be able to play. We have done the sensible thing and withdrawn him from the team."

Aaron Cruden will now start in the number 10 jersey for his 13th Test appearance, with Beauden Barrett - who had been practising with the side this week - moving into the reserves.

New Zealand team: Israel Dagg; Cory Jane, Conrad Smith, Ma'a Nonu, Julian Savea; Aaron Cruden, Aaron Smith; Tony Woodcock, Keven Mealamu, Owen Franks, Luke Romano, Brodie Retallick, Victor Vito, Richie McCaw (capt), Kieran Read.

Reserves: Andrew Hore, Charlie Faumuina, Samuel Whitelock, Liam Messam, Piri Weepu, Beauden Barrett, Ben Smith.


From Belfast Telegraph