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Dublin: 7°C Tuesday 27 October 2020

All Blacks hand debut to Super Rugby sensation Nehe Milner-Skudder

The side-stepping talent will make his international bow against Australia on Saturday.

NEW ZEALAND HAVE named uncapped Hurricanes star Nehe Milner-Skudder on the right wing in their team to face Australia in Saturday’s Rugby Championship decider in Sydney (KO 11.05 Irish time).

Aaron Smith, Ben Smith and Richie McCaw celebrate after Aaron Cruden kicked a late conversion to win the game Aaron Smith, Julian Savea and Richie McCaw all start. Source: James Crombie/INPHO

The 24-year-old was nothing short of sensational in the Hurricanes’ run to this year’s Super Rugby final, featuring at fullback and on the wing. Milner-Skudder’s recovery from injury has now allowed Steve Hansen to hand the thrilling attacking talent an international debut and an opportunity to stake his World Cup claim.

Blockbusting powerhouse Julian Savea returns on the left wing for the Kiwis, with Ben Smith completing a mouth-watering back three.

With Ma’a Nonu dropping out of the side, Sonny Bill Williams comes back in to partner Conrad Smith in midfield, while Dan Carter is named at out-half alongside Aaron Smith.

Nehe Milner-Skudder makes a break Milner-Skudder has some of the best footwork in the world. Source: Photosport/Grant Down/INPHO

After Liam Messam started at blindside against South Africa two weekends ago, Jerome Kaino is back in the six shirt, while Luke Romano comes into the team in the second row.

Nepo Laulala and Sam Cane have been introduced to the bench for what is the first of two Bledisloe Cup clashes.

New Zealand (v Australia):

15. Ben Smith
14. Nehe Milner-Skudder
13. Conrad Smith
12. Sonny Bill Williams
11. Julian Savea
10. Dan Carter
9. Aaron Smith

1. Tony Woodcock
2. Dane Coles
3. Owen Franks
4. Brodie Retallick
5. Luke Romano
6. Jerome Kaino
7. Richie McCaw (captain)
8. Kieran Read


16. Codie Taylor
17. Ben Franks
18. Nepo Laulala
19. Sam Whitelock
20. Sam Cane
21. TJ Perenara
22. Beauden Barrett
23. Malakai Fekitoa

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About the author:

Murray Kinsella

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