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It’s the game no-one wants to play in, but the All Blacks and Wales will do battle tonight for the title of third-best in the world. Join The Roar for live scores and a blog from 8pm (AEDT).
No-one expected to see New Zealand, the defending two-time World Cup champions, playing in this game. Yet here we are. They’ll go in as heavy favourites, which seems a bit harsh on a very good Welsh team.
Eddie Jones’s England dominated the All Blacks last weekend, barely letting them out of their own half. Wales were undone by South Africa, largely due to Faf du Plessis’s kicking game.
How the two teams approach this game will be key. Rarely is this type of fixture played, and we just don’t know what game plan the teams will bring.
It could be a nothing-to-lose style where they throw the ball around, which would suit New Zealand, or a bit of a dead game which would play into Wales’s hands.
In team news, Warren Gatland has made nine changes from the team which went down last weekend, in what will be his last game as head coach.
Owen Lane will start on the wing, Nicky Smith and Dillon Lewis slotting into the front row, with Adam Beard coming in to partner Alun Wyn Jones in the second row.
James Davies fits into the back row, and Tomos Williams takes his place at nine, alongside Rhys Patchell.
For the All Blacks, Scott Barrett moves from the back row to the second row, as one of seven changes. Read starts at eight in his last game.
Code Taylor replaces Dane Coles, and Sam Whitelock is left out of the 23 entirely.
New Zealand should bounce back, but it’ll be a close game.
All Blacks by 8.
Join The Roar for live scores and a blog from 8pm (AEDT).
Time: 8pm (AEDT)
Venue: Tokyo Stadium
TV: LIVE on 10 Bold, Fox Sports
Referee: Wayne Barnes
Odds: New Zealand $1.06, Wales $9.50
Joe Moody, Dane Coles, Nepo Laulala, Brodie Retallick,Scott Barrett, Shannon Frizell, Sam Cane, Kieran Read (capt.), Aaron Smith, Richie Mo’unga, Rieko Ioane, Sonny Bill Williams, Ryan Crotty, Ben Smith, Beauden Barrett.
Reserves: Liam Coltman, Atu Moli, Angus Ta’avao, Patrick Tuipulotu, Matt Todd, Brad Weber, Anton Lienert-Brown, Jordie Barrett
Nicky Smith, Ken Owens, Dillon Lewis, Adam Beard, Alun Wyn Jones (capt.), Justin Tipuric, James Davies, Ross Moriarty, Tomos Williams, Rhys Patchell, Josh Adams, Owen Watkin, Jonathan Davies, Owen Lane, Hallam Amos.
Reserves: Elliot Dee, Rhys Carre, Wyn Jones, Jake Ball, Aaron Shingler, Gareth Davies, Dan Biggar, Hadleigh Parkes