Wallabies make four changes, All Blacks welcome back Barrett

By Sports Desk October 15, 2020

Australia have made four changes to their team for Sunday's Bledisloe Cup clash with New Zealand at Eden Park.

The Wallabies and All Blacks played out a thrilling 16-16 draw in the series opener last week.

But Australia head coach Dave Rennie has still made four changes as Brandon Paenga-Amosa and Ned Hanigan start, and Liam Wright and Jordan Petaia move onto the bench.

After starting in Wellington, Folau Fainga'a and Pete Samu have dropped out of the team, while Rob Valetini and Noah Lolesio are not in the matchday squad

"We've got a group of 44 men who are all working hard and pushing for selection," Rennie said.

"We've had massive support from back home and as a team we definitely feel that and it's something we'll draw on on Sunday afternoon.

"We know that New Zealand will step it up another level this weekend, we're excited by the challenge ahead."

The All Blacks, meanwhile, have made five changes to their starting side, while prop Alex Hodgman is set to make his Test debut from the bench.

Sam Whitelock is out after suffering a concussion, while in a boost, Scott Barrett returns following a four-month injury absence.

All Blacks star Beauden Barrett also returns, having withdrawn from game one due to an Achilles tendon problem.

"Our preparation this week has been really good," All Blacks head coach Ian Foster said.

"It was our first Test together last weekend and while there were some aspects of our game that we were pretty excited about, especially around our set piece, we didn't get the performance that we wanted, so there has been plenty for us to work on. We need to be smarter with our ball and more focussed defensively.

"The Bledisloe series is back to square one and starts again this weekend, which is exciting. It's the last Test at home for us so there will also be massive excitement amongst our fans. There is everything to play for and we can't wait."

Holders of the Bledisloe Cup since 2003, the All Blacks are unbeaten in 43 consecutive games at Eden Park.

 

New Zealand: Beauden Barrett, Jordie Barrett, Anton Lienert-Brown, Jack Goodhue, Caleb Clarke, Richie Mo'unga, Aaron Smith; Joe Moody, Dane Coles, Ofa Tuungafasi, Patrick Tuipulotu, Tupou Vaa'I, Shannon Frizell, Sam Cane, Ardie Savea.
Replacements: Codie Taylor, Alex Hodgman, Nepo Laulala, Scott Barrett, Hoskins Sotutu, TJ Perenara, Rieko Ioane, Damian McKenzie.

Australia: Tom Banks, Filipo Daugunu, Hunter Paisami, Matt To'omua, Marika Koroibete, James O'Connor, Nic White; James Slipper, Brandon Paenga-Amosa, Taniela Tupou, Lukhan Salakaia-Loto, Matt Philip, Ned Hanigan, Michael Hooper, Harry Wilson.
Replacements: Jordan Uelese, Scott Sio, Allan Alaalatoa, Rob Simmons, Liam Wright, Jake Gordon, Jordan Petaia, Reece Hodge.

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