Hansen sticks with same side for second test

Israel Dagg
Israel Dagg

 

Steve Hansen has kept his scalpel sheathed.

Rather than carve-up the All Blacks starting side that bumbled their way to an unconvincing 23-13 win over France last 茁weekend, coach Hansen has retained the same men for the second test at AMI Stadium on Saturday night.

Three changes have made to the bench.

Hooker Andrew Hore and loosehead prop Tony Woodcock replace Keven Mealamu and Ben Afeaki and halfback Piri Weepu replaces Tawera Kerr-Barlow.

The match, to be played in front of a sell-out crowd of 20,765 fans, will be captain Kieran Read’s 50th test.

Wholesale changes weren’t expected but the glittering performance of wing Rene Ranger, who forced a backline re-shuffle after he substituted fullback Israel Dagg in the final quarter at Eden Park, was impressive enough to raise speculation of a revamp of the back three.

– stuff.co.nz