All Blacks set to be without Whitelock and Kerr-Barlow


New Zealand duo Sam Whitelock and Tawera Kerr-Barlow are expected to miss the first Test against Wales on Saturday due to injury.

Whitelock has trained this week, but the giant lock is not fully fit as he steps up his recovery from a hamstring problem.

"He's been doing some good running and he's not far away," New Zealand assistant coach Ian Foster said

"We're not too sure, we're going to give ourselves a bit more time."

Kerr-Barlow is also set to sit out the opening Test in the three-match series at Eden Park, but the scrum-half is in line to make his comeback from a broken hand in the second Test at the Westpac Stadium a week on Saturday.

Centre Charlie Ngatai has been released from the All Blacks squad again as he continues to suffer from the effects of concussion.

Foster said of Ngatai:  "We're going to keep him at home. He's not symptom-free so he'll carry on through the protocols and our advice is it's better to leave him out.

"We'll review that on a week-by-week basis.

"I wouldn't say it's a long-term concern - it affects everyone differently. It's been a significant time period and we think it's best he has a bit of time and space now."

Foster also revealed that no members of the All Blacks squad will be available to feature for Chiefs against Wales in Hamilton next Tuesday.