Jerome Kaino has been ruled out of the All Blacks’ clash with the Wallabies at Eden Park on Saturday night.
The Blues flanker suffered an elbow injury last week which is expected to keep him out of rugby for four to six weeks, and he is replaced in the starting XV by Liam Messam.
Charlie Faumuina has overcome illness to be named on the bench along with fellow Blues players Keven Mealamu and Steven Luatua.
Cory Jane is poised to play his 50th Test while Ryan Crotty comes in at 12 for the injured Ma’a Nonu, pairing Conrad Smith in the midfield who returns to action following the birth of his first child.
The team is: (with Test caps in brackets)
1. Wyatt Crockett (28)
2. Dane Coles (19)
3. Owen Franks (58)
4. Brodie Retallick (28)
5. Samuel Whitelock (55)
6. Liam Messam (32)
7. Richie McCaw – captain (128)
8. Kieran Read (63)
9. Aaron Smith (30)
10. Aaron Cruden (33)
11. Julian Savea (23)
12. Ryan Crotty (7)
13. Conrad Smith (78)
14. Cory Jane (49)
15. Ben Smith (30)
16. Keven Mealamu (114)
17. Ben Franks (32)
18. Charlie Faumuina (20)
19. Steven Luatua (12)
20. Sam Cane (15)
21. TJ Perenara (4)
22. Beauden Barrett (20)
23. Malakai Fekitoa (3)
All Blacks Head Coach Steve Hansen said: “While we were disappointed with the draw last weekend, we are excited by the opportunity that presents itself this weekend. It’s another Test match against Australia, the chance to win the Bledisloe Cup and the first home Test of the Investec Rugby Championship in front of our home fans.
“We have been working hard on all aspects of our game this week and there’s a definite resolve to improve the quality of our performance on Saturday.”
On the injury front, Hansen confirmed that Nonu had suffered deep shoulder bruising but is expected to be available for selection for the Test against Argentina in Napier in two weeks, while Kaino has an injured elbow, which is expected to keep him out of rugby for four to six weeks.
All Blacks – The Highlights
* Since the 2011 Rugby World Cup, the All Blacks have played 32 Tests, with 29 wins, two draws and one loss, for a winning record of 93.5 percent.
* The All Blacks and Australia have played each other 150 times since 1903, with 102 wins to the All Blacks and 41 losses. Last weekend’s 12-12 draw in Sydney was the seventh time the teams have drawn.
* The All Blacks have won The Rugby Championship for the past two years and held The Bledisloe Cup since 2003.
Meanwhile, All Blacks squad members Charles Piutau and Nathan Harris have been released to play for their respective ITM Cup teams on Sunday.