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Maori All Blacks team to face the French Barbarians

allblacks.com     09 Nov 2017    

The team is:

 
 
Player

Province

Iwi

1

Chris Eves

North Harbour

Waikato / Tainui

2

Ash Dixon (Captain)

Hawkes Bay

Ngati Tahinga

3

Marcel Renata

Auckland

Ngati Whanaunga / Ngai Takoto

4

Jackson Hemopo

Manawatu

Tuhourangi / Ngati Wahiao / Ngai Tahu / Ngati Rangi / Ngati Apa ki te Ra Tõ

5

Keepa Mewett*

Bay of Plenty

Te Aupouri / Te Whakatohea

6

Tom Franklin

Bay Of Plenty

Ngati Maniapoto

7

Sam Henwood

Counties Manukau

Ngapuhi / Te Whanau a Apanui

8

Akira Ioane

Auckland

Ngapuhi / Te Whanau a Apanui

9

Brad Weber

Hawke’s Bay

Ngati Porou

10

Jackson Garden-Bachop

Wellington

Ngati Awa

11

Shaun Stevenson

North Harbour

Ngapuhi

12

Rob Thompson

Canterbury

Ngati Kahungunu / Nga Rauru

13

Tim Bateman

Canterbury

Ngai Tahu

14

Sean Wainui

Taranaki

Ngai Tuhoe / Te Aitanga a Mahaki / Nga Arikikaiputahi / Ngati Porou

15

Charlie Ngatai

Taranaki

Ngati Porou / Te Whanau a Apanui / Te Whakatohea

16

Liam Polwart

Bay Of Plenty

Ngati Pu

17

Ross Wright

Northland

Ngati Whatua / Ngati Porou

18

Tyrel Lomax

Tasman

Ngai Tuhoe / Muaupoko

19

Jordan Manihera

Waikato

Ngati Wairere / Waikato -Tainui

20

Dan Pryor

Northland

Ngati Awa / Ngati Pikiao / Ngati Rangitihi

21

Jonathan Ruru*

Otago

Ngati Kahungunu / Rongomaiwahine

22

Ihaia West

Hawke’s Bay

Ngati Kahungunu / Ngati Porou

23

Teihorangi Walden*

Otago

Te Atiawa

* = New Cap 

Head Coach Clayton McMillan has made four changes to the run-on side with two players to make their debut against the French Barbarians. Bay of Plenty captain Keepa Mewett will make his debut starting at No.5 while Sam Henwood will start at openside flank. Jackson Garden-Bachop and Shaun Stevenson both move into starting positions at 10 and 11 respectively.

Halfback Jonathan Ruru will make his debut off the bench. 

McMillan said the match against Canada had taken a physical toll on the side.
“They’re a bit banged up after Canada. The astro turf while it’s nice to play on, it has its downsides. There are a number of boys sporting some nasty grazes and we picked up a couple of injuries in the game. But the boys are in good spirits and looking forward to the match. 

“Keepa Mewett comes into the second row. He’s had a really sound (Mitre 10 Cup) season, and he fronted really well against the British and Irish Lions for the New Zealand Barbarians this year, so I’m really confident in his ability to deliver in the areas that we want him to. 

“Jonathan Ruru, Tei Walden, both out of Otago, have been playing really well for the best part of two seasons now. Jonno is a bigger boy and against the French we might need somebody who virtually half a forward and Tei gives us some versatility off the bench. 

“Jackson Garden-Bachop had an outstanding Mitre 10 Cup and a little bit like the halfback situation, he gives us a little bit more size and the ability to be more direct and Ihaia (West) will give us speed off the bench.”
Reflecting on a solid win against Canada, McMillan acknowledged that the Vancouver match had been far from perfect. 

“I think we turned the ball over a little too cheaply, and our basic skill-set let us down at times. But overall, we’re pretty happy with the performance.
“We’re expecting the French to want to take our side up front, to be direct, but it would be remiss of us to think they aren’t going to play traditional Barbarians rugby at some stage, and look to give it some air, which is French rugby, let alone Barbarians rugby.” 

The match kicks off at 8:45pm in Bordeaux, the night before the All Blacks take on France in Paris.