29 May

Haka's Possible All Black Squad
by Tracey Nelson
29 May 2009

The first All Black squad for the Iveco series against France and Italy is due to be named this Sunday at 2pm NZ time. The All Blacks will play France twice in the Iveco Series, in Dunedin on 13 June and Wellington on 20 June, followed by a Test against Italy in Christchurch on 27 June. With captain Richie McCaw ruled out of the series this morning with a knee ligament injury the Haka squad have put their collective minds together and come up with the following possible squad and new captain.

We’ve split the 26 man squad into 11 backs and 15 forwards, and they are as follows:

Mils Muliaina (captain)
Joe Rokocoko
Lelia Masaga
Rudi Wulf
Richard Kahui
Conrad Smith
Ma’a Nonu
Isaia Toeava
Stephen Donald
Piri Weepu
Jimmy Cowan

Rodney So’oialo
Jerome Kaino
Kieran Read
Adam Thomson
Tanerau Latimer
Liam Messam
Brad Thorn
Isaac Ross,
Kevin O’Neill
Tony Woodcock
John Afoa
Wyatt Crockett
Andrew Hore
Keven Mealamu

As you can see, we’ve gone with Mils Muliaina as our captain in the absence of McCaw based on his excellent leadership and form with the Chiefs this season. We only have one specialist 1st 5 in Stephen Donald, with Isaia Toeava and Piri Weepu to cover. We’ve picked Adam Thomson as a utility to cover openside and blindside flanker, with Tanerau Latimer our first choice specialist to replace Richie McCaw on the openside.

Possible bolters (in order):
Aled de Malmanche, Owen Franks, Jeremy Thrush, Renee Ranger, George Whitelock.

Disappointing picks on form should they be named:
Sione Lauaki, John Schwalger, Jamie MacIntosh

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