Hansen makes five changes for Springboks clash

Steve Hansen has recalled his rested stars for New Zealand's final match of the Rugby Championship against South Africa at Newlands on Saturday.

Sam Whitelock, Sam Cane, Liam Squire and Ryan Crotty missed the 36-10 win over Argentina last weekend, the All Blacks crowned champions prior to kick-off after the Springboks drew with Australia.

Lock Whitelock comes back in for Luke Romano in Cape Town, while Cane returns at openside flanker instead of Matt Todd and back-row Squire replaces Vaea Fifita.

Centre Crotty also returns at the expense of Anton Lienert-Brown and Nehe Milner-Skudder replaces Waisake Naholo on the right wing.

Brodie Retallick did not travel to South Africa following the premature death of his baby son.

Hansen said: "We've settled in well in Cape Town this week. However, our preparation has been different because of the need to recover well from all the travel.

"This has meant that there's been less time on the park and an even greater emphasis than normal on the mental side of our preparation. As always, getting real clarity of our roles and how we want to play has been key.

"We know we'll be playing a proud Springbok side which will be determined to rectify what happened in Albany.

"While it's necessary for us to try and anticipate what they're going to bring to the match, it's more important for us to focus on what we're going to bring to the encounter. Our skill execution, our physicality and our ability to play our 'triple threat' game will be critical."


New Zealand team: Damian McKenzie, Nehe Milner-Skudder, Ryan Crotty, Sonny Bill Williams, Rieko Ioane, Beauden Barrett, Aaron Smith; Kane Hames, Dane Coles, Nepo Laulala, Sam Whitelock, Scott Barrett, Liam Squire, Sam Cane, Kieran Read [captain].

Replacements: Codie Taylor, Wyatt Crockett, Ofa Tu'ungafasi, Patrick Tuipulotu, Matt Todd, Tawera Kerr-Barlow, Lima Sopoaga, David Havili.



Read Full Story