New Zealand Under 21 team named to play Australia     17 Jun 2006    

Auckland’s Onosa’i Tololima-Auva’a will start on the blindside flank in place of Canterbury’s Michael Paterson, who moves to lock in place of Ryan Wilson of North Harbour.

Canterbury utility back Aaron Bancroft, who started at centre against England on Wednesday, will return to New Zealand on the weekend because of an ankle injury. He will be replaced by Waikato’s Richard Kahui, who is currently playing for New Zealand Maori and will join the New Zealand Under 21 team following the Churchill Cup final in Canada on Sunday.

Bancroft’s place in Sunday’s match against Australia will be filled by Tasman’s Robbie Flynn.

Cooper said that while New Zealand had won both its games so far in the competition, the team had to beat Australia to advance to the next stage of the competition.

“It was pleasing to record a good win against the Six Nations Champions, England. Now our focus is on Australia,” Cooper said.

“This competition is reaching a crucial point and we know we will have to play well to secure victory and move to the next round,” he added.

New Zealand Under 21 team against Australia: 1. Jamie Mackintosh (Southland, captain), 2. Hikawera Elliot (Hawke’s Bay), 3. Michael Reid (North Harbour), 4. Jeremy Thrush (Wellington), 5. Michael Paterson (Canterbury), 6. Onosa’i Tololima-Auva’a (Auckland), 7. Serge Lilo (Wellington), 8. Kieran Read (Canterbury), 9. Alby Mathewson (Wellington), 10. William Ripia (Waikato), 11. James Somerset (Auckland), 12. Stephen Brett (Canterbury), 13. Robbie Flynn (Tasman), 14. Lelia Masaga (Counties Manukau), 15. George Pisi (North Harbour)

Reserves: 16. Lance Po-Ching (Auckland), 17. Arden David-Perrot (Wellington), 18. Ryan Wilson (North Harbour), 19. Mikaele Tuu’u (Canterbury), 20. Taniela Moa (Auckland), 21. Miah Nikora (Wellington), 22. Lance MacDonald (Bay of Plenty)

The match kicks off at 4.00am Sunday (NZ time).