All Blacks start Good­hue against South Africa

The Phnom Penh Post - - SPORT -

ALL Blacks coach Steve Hansen handed ris­ing star Jack Good­hue a start in the cen­tres for Sat­ur­day’s Rugby Cham­pi­onship Test against South Africa, de­mot­ing vet­eran Ryan Crotty to the bench.

Good­hue, 23, will part­ner Sonny Bill Wil­liams as New Zealand look to avenge last month’s shock 36-34 loss to the Spring­boks in Welling­ton.

Hansen, whose side has al­ready won the south­ern hemi­sphere tour­na­ment, said he wanted to see how the Good- hue-Wil­liams com­bi­na­tion worked, no doubt with one eye on next year’s Rugby World Cup de­fence in Ja­pan.

“We know a lot about Ryan and Jack but we don’t know a lot about Sonny and Jack,” he said.

“All year we’ve been try­ing to work out what’s our best com­bi­na­tion in that area for the fu­ture and this is an op­por­tu­nity to do that.”

The in­clu­sion of Good­hue, Crotty’s team-mate at the Cru­saders, is one of four changes to the start­ing XV that beat Ar­gentina 35-17 to seal the ti­tle last week.

Cap­tain Kieran Read, half­back Aaron Smith and prop Owen Franks all re­turn af­ter be­ing rested against the Pu­mas.

Hansen said New Zealand needed to main­tain their in­ten­sity in front of a sold-out crowd of 52,000 in Pre­to­ria, even though they had al­ready won the tour­na­ment.

With South Africa rid­ing high af­ter back-to-back wins over the All Blacks and Aus­tralia, Hansen ad­mit­ted the New Zealan­ders had a point to prove.

“Noth­ing changes for us. It’s a Test match that ev­ery­one in New Zealand ex­pects us to win,” he said.

“South Africa are play­ing with a lot of con­fi­dence and af­ter their two re­cent wins, their con­fi­dence lev­els will be even higher. So we’ll need to re­spond with real pur­pose, com­po­sure, be­lief and in­ten­sity.”

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Cambodia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.