Parsons named for second test

Parsons named for second test

James Parsons only returned to the All Black environment this week, providing injury cover ahead of game two of the Bledisloe Cup, and already he’s been given a spot on the side to play Australia.

The 2016 Blues captain and hooker will be on the bench alongside fellow Blues prop Charlie Faumuina, while flanker Jerome Kaino will be starting the test.

The All Blacks side to play the second Bledisloe Cup match in the Investec Rugby Championship at Westpac Stadium, Wellington, on Saturday 27 August is as follows:

1. Joe Moody (14)
2.  Dane Coles (40)
3.  Owen Franks (81)
4.  Brodie Retallick (51)
5.  Samuel Whitelock (76)
6.  Jerome Kaino (70)
7.  Sam Cane (35)
8.  Kieran Read – captain (88)
9.  Aaron Smith (51)
10.  Beauden Barrett (40)
11.  Julian Savea (44)
12.  Anton Lienert-Brown
13.  Malakai Fekitoa (16)
14.  Israel Dagg (52)
15.  Ben Smith (52)

16.  James Parsons (1)
17.  Wyatt Crockett (49)
18.  Charlie Faumuina (37)
19.  Liam Squire (2)
20. Ardie Savea (3)
21.  TJ Perenara (20)
22.  Aaron Cruden (40)
23.  Seta Tamanivalu (2)

Reflecting on the challenge this week, Head Coach Steve Hansen said: “This Test match will tell us a lot about ourselves and Australia.  There’s no doubt that one of the hardest things to do in sport is to back up a big performance with another big performance.  It’s totally a mental thing, so that is something we’ve been working really hard on this week: getting our feet back on the ground and our attitudes right for what is going to be a really physical and demanding Test.  As always, the expectation we have placed on ourselves is to improve in everything we do.

“Australia is a proud side and will not have been happy with their performance last week. As a result, we’re expecting them to throw everything they’ve got at us.  This should lead to a very exciting, physical and high-intensity Test match with the Bledisloe Cup being in the balance.”

The game, played in Wellington at Westpac Stadium this Saturday, will kick-off at 7.35pm and be shown live on SKY Sport 1.