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The Roar


All Blacks to unleash Mo'unga at 10 for second Fiji Test

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15th July, 2021
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Loose forward Ardie Savea and centre Anton Lienert-Brown have returned to the All Blacks starting side for their international against Fiji in Hamilton.

Flyhalf Richie Mo’unga has been given the All Blacks No.10 shirt, with Beauden Barrett to start on the bench for the second Test against Fiji in Hamilton on Sunday.

Loose forward Ardie Savea and centre Anton Lienert-Brown have been rushed into the starting side after recovering from injuries.

Savea will start at openside flanker, with Lienert-Brown pairing with inside centre David Havili for the match at Waikato Stadium.

Lock Sam Whitelock returns to captain the side, starting alongside Scott Barrett in the second row, with Brodie Retallick dropping to the bench.

The All Blacks beat Fiji 57-23 in the first match in Dunedin last Saturday.

Fiji also will be reinforced by returning players.

Scrumhalf Frank Lomani, who is based in Australia and missed the first Test because of border restrictions, returns to the starting lineup.

Peceli Yato forces a backrow change, displacing Albert Tuisui at No. 8.


Lock Leone Nakarawa will captain the tourists in place of Levani Botia, who has been ruled out with a knee injury.

“Earlier in the week we knew we had a doubt with Levani and we spoke to Leone,” head coach Vern Cotter said.

“He has already been looking after the lineouts and now he takes on a wider leadership role, but he does that naturally with his excellent leadership skills.”

Fiji were dominant at the breakdown last weekend and that may be an area Savea can improve. 

All Blacks coach Ian Foster said he was happy with the first Test effort, but acknowledged many fans were not.

“It was the second Test of the year for us last weekend and we were pretty happy with our performance,” he said.

“There were a lot of views about our performance and that’s the beauty of being in this team: people expect perfection.

“We took some really good steps up from the week before and we were satisfied. But it did highlight some areas we need to keep growing.”


NZ: Damien McKenzie, Will Jordan, Anton Lienert-Brown, David Havili, Sevu Reece, Richie Mo’unga, Aaron Smith, Luke Jacobson, Ardie Savea, Akira Ioane, Sam Whitelock (capt), Scott Barrett, Nepo Laulala, Codie Taylor, George Bower. Reserves: Dane Coles, Ethan de Groot, Angus Ta’avao, Brodie Retallick, Shannon Frizell, Brad Weber, Beauden Barrett, Rieko Ioane.

Fiji: Kini Murimurivalu, Setareki Tuicuvu, Waisea Nayacalevu, Eneriko Buliruarua, Nemani Nadolo, Ben Volavola, Frank Lomani; Peceli Yato, Mesulame Kunavula, Johnny Dyer, Leone Nakarawa (captain), Temo Mayanavanua, Mesaki Doge, Sam Matavesi, Peni Ravai. Reserves: Mesulame Dolokoto, Eroni Mawi, Leeroy Atalifo, Albert Tuisue, Kitione Kamikamica, Moses Sorovi, Teti Tela, Manasa Mataele.