of nine blood for the All Blacks against Ireland

Former rugby international XIII Roger Tuivasa-Sheck was called up on Monday by the All Blacks alongside five other newcomers to prepare for the series of three test-matches in July against Ireland.

In this group of 36 players, captain Sam Cane is one of the few veterans to remain, despite the threat of rejuvenation after resilient defeats against France at Ireland during the Hemisphere tour north at the end of 2021.

In the 15 months of the World Cup in France, the most noticeable absence was that of the 78-cap TJ Perenara half-breed, replaced by Folau Fakatava (Otago Highlanders).

Fakatava, born in Tonga, has been declared eligible to play with the All Blacks in May only by World Rugby.

The other novices are the back Tuivasa-Sheck, the players of Leicester Fainga’anuku and Stephen Prophet, are the assistants Aidan Ross and Pita Gus Sowakula.

Tuivasa-Sheck, 29, a former hope of rugby at XV, shone at the national rugby championship at XIII, where he was named best player in 2018, before returning to XV last year.

Coach Ian Foster and the composer included the blessings of the candidates in the selections: select Joe Moody, teammate Ethan Blackadder and center Anton Lienert-Brown.

Ireland outscored the All Blacks 29-20 in November in Dublin and recorded three of their last five confrontations, but have never won on New Zealand lands in their 12 matches.

«This will be the biggest home series for the All Blacks since the 2017 British Lions tour to Ireland.», A déclaré Foster.

«There are huge expectations around (of this series) and this will be extremely controversial».

The first test against Ireland will take place at Eden Park in Auckland on July 2 before a second meeting a week later in Dunedin and the last in Wellington on 16 July.

New Zealand Group: Beauden Barrett, Jordie Barrett, Scott Barrett, George Bower, Sam Cane (capt), Finlay Christie, Caleb Clarke, Dane Coles, Jack Goodhue, Leicester Fainga’anuku, Folau Fakatava, David Havili, Akira Ioane , Reiko Ioane, Will Jordan, Nepo Laulala, Josh Lord, Richie Mo’unga, Dalton Papalii, Stephen Prophet, Sevu Reece, Brodie Retallick, Aidan Ross, Ardie Savea, Aaron Smith, Hoskins Sotutu, Pita Gus Sowakula, Samisoni Taukei’aho , Codie Taylor, Angus Ta’avao, Roger Tuivasa-Sheck, Karl Tu’inukuafe, Quinn Tupaea, Ofa Tuungafasi, Sam Whitelock, Tupo Vaa’i.

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