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[RWC2019][3rd & 4th Place Playoff] New Zealand vs. Wales (01/11/2019)

Cooper

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This game should actually be very open. Both teams should have a "don't give a hoot" attitude.

I think we will care quite a lot and approach the game pretty seriously. It's Read and Hansen's final test and it's RWC. Finishing 3rd is still a great achievement.
 

Yoshimitsu

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Stranger things have happened but in my opinion Wales have virtually no chance of winning this game (even less than usual). The South Africa game appeared to be a game too far and this is therefore that +1 with a shorter turnaround time against a team that won't try and play them at their own game.

I can actually see this being a hammering. The All Blacks will be hurting but they understand about resilience and a few will be finishing their careers and a few more will be playing to keep theirs going. The Welsh went all-in for the semi-final and still got beat. They will no doubt do their very best for Gatland but I don't think it's going to be near enough.

NZ by 20ish I reckon..
 

Zapphod

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I think we will care quite a lot and approach the game pretty seriously. It's Read and Hansen's final test and it's RWC. Finishing 3rd is still a great achievement.

Really I think we should just send out the coaching staff and send the players home.
As for finishing 3rd being a great achievement, off the top of your head how many bronze medal winners can you name from the last Olympics?
It is a losers final and nothing else, the result is meaningless at best and more embarrassing at worst there is nothing to gain from this match.

I would much sooner see a plate final for tier two teams or even combine the woman's world cup and have their final than watch this game.
 

ncurd

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As for finishing 3rd being a great achievement, off the top of your head how many bronze medal winners can you name from the last Olympics?
Bronze tends to actually mean something at the Olympics as a point of pride. It's usually said people who win Bronze are usually happier than silver. Mainly because the silver medalist was genuinely competing for gold where as the bronze person has usually surpassed what they expected to achieve.
 

Cooper

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Really I think we should just send out the coaching staff and send the players home.
As for finishing 3rd being a great achievement, off the top of your head how many bronze medal winners can you name from the last Olympics?
It is a losers final and nothing else, the result is meaningless at best and more embarrassing at worst there is nothing to gain from this match.

I would much sooner see a plate final for tier two teams or even combine the woman's world cup and have their final than watch this game.

Well you can speak for yourself on this one.

I actually really dislike this attitude towards the 3rd & 4th play-off game. It often stinks of sour grapes and a sore loser mentality. It gives both teams a good opportunity to finish the season on a high. I remember this attitude in New Zealand towards this game came about after the disappointment in 1999 after losing to France and Taine Randall and John Hart made similar comments towards the game. Yes it's the losers final, yes we would rather be in the final, but it's still an opportunity to beat another good team and finish higher in the pecking order.

I care for the game, I don't want to finish 4th or lose to Wales, I'm sure the team feels the same way. I think it's good to establish who the 3rd best side was and 4th best in the touranment and the game should remain.

I for one am looking forward to the game and relish the chance of watching the All Blacks one more time this year and before some of our greats retire and I want to see them go out on a win.
 

mania

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As for finishing 3rd being a great achievement, off the top of your head how many bronze medal winners can you name from the last Olympics?
wow thats a real sht disrespectful attitude.
as charlieBrown famously said "winning isnt everything and losing is nothing"
regardless im still supporting black and i hope the boys have a game they can enjoy and get to express themselves. i hope Wales turn up and give it their all and play in the true spirit of competition, which isnt about winning.
ABs are 3rd / 4th in the world at rugby. that is an achievement.
maybe its better you dont support the ABs.

good luck ABs and Wales. i hope its an injury free, beautiful expressive honourable game
 

Not Eddie Jones

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Notes from ‘A Cautionary Tale’:

I do get where your coming from but as a guy who was born in the late 70’s, I had to watch Wales **** the bed almost every match for over 20 years. There was the occasional match where the bed linen would come out ok but on the whole we got massacred... consistently.

Graham Henry and Steve Hansen got the ‘tanker’ to ever so slowly start turning around in the right direction, eventually resulting in the Ruddock coached Grand Slam of ‘05 but even then there was the ignominy of the 2006 6 Nations as well as the 6 Nations and World Cup of ‘07.

What Gatland has done, with the raw materials available is very near miraculous. I understand that we are not too pleasant on the eye and I also lament our lack of a World Cup final but the consistency of Wales being able to consistently ‘compete’ at the highest table seemed like a pipe dream to me for the first three decades of my life... particularly when we were conceding almost 100 points in one match to the SH big 3.

There is no doubts Gats isn’t perfect but I for one am extremely concerned about how we’ll manage without him. I hope I’m wrong. I hope we play infinite-plays with the quality never dipping below that of ‘the try’. I hope we reel off Grand Slams for fun and expose Gatlands limitations by reaching our first World Cup final in 2023 by cutting all opposition to shreds. Do I think it will happen though?

No! Sadly I think we’ll become part of the lower half of the 6 Nations. In all probability it’ll be us and Scotland ‘competing’ for the most easy on the eye play style, while avoiding the Wooden Spoon.

I take it from you’re username that you were born in ‘91... which means by the time you started seriously watching Wales on the international stage we would soon win our first slam for 27 years. Then another in ‘08, and another in ‘12 followed by a championship in ‘13 and another Slam in ‘19. I totally get that to you, it must just be cyclical right, and we’ll have a transitional year, maybe two and we’ll be back on top... but all bar one (‘05) were under Gats or his influence (‘13).

I’d brace yourself for some lean times if I were you, then if I’m wrong and Pivac coaches us to the same level of success or more than Gats did, while we are also playing sexy rugby you haven’t lost anything. But if I’m right, at least you’ll be prepared... and it won’t hit you by surprise cause it’s the ones you don’t see coming that hit you the hardest.

I'm sorry, Bushy, but I can't follow the logic that 'what Gatland has done is very near miraculous' anymore than I can follow the logic that with Gatland gone, Wales will revert to losing heavily like they have in past decades. I'm was born in the mid-70s and I remember Wales playing fun, attacking rugby. Attacking rugby was the Wales Way, in the same way as Eddie Jones talks about playing rugby the Japan Way (super fast) or the England Way (set piece and power-led). Many were the times that I wished some of the kick-and-clap England teams would play the Wales Way back then! Then Gatland arrived and got Wales to play a much more negative and defence-obsessed style. He had some success with it, but he made them defensively stronger at the expense of their attack. And that's always been the biggest problem with Gatland and where I think he's done Wales a disservice: his style considers attack and defence as mutually exclusive - you can have one but not both. If Wales have a good defence, they can't have a good attack too can they? It stands to reason, so which do you want Wales? Which would you prefer? Have a good defence and stay in games and be competitive, or have a good attack and carry on getting regular thrashings, because you can't have both you know. This is the rhetoric that I've been hearing from Welsh fans and pundits for years. Gatland seems to have convinced them its an absolute truth. Gatland couldn't take the Welsh strength of playing attacking rugby (the Wales Way) and add to it, oh no, that was impossible, he had to scrap it in order to make them competitive... o_O

Gatland didn't sacrifice the attack to make the defence better and thus make Wales competitive, he's just rubbish at coaching attack. When Wales were at SA's tryline in the semi, they put together 20 phases that amounted to nothing more than a forward running straight into a defender 20 times. No guile, no offloads, no quick passes, cut-out passes, sidesteps, nothing. Four years ago, Wales couldn't score against Oz when they were down to 13 men. With France down to 14 in the QF this time around, Wales offered nothing in attack. But hey, they were competitive... o_O

Plenty of teams play good attacking rugby but also defend well. NZ are the best attacking side in the world, but their defence doesn't suffer because of it. England have played some lovely rugby in this tournament, but have still only conceded 4 tries in 5 matches. Japan have a lot of amateur players, yet they play sensational attacking rugby and their defence has hardly been a pushover - they gave up only 12 points to World Number One Ireland! The point is that in rugby, attack and defence are fluid - defence can score you tries and attack can stop your opposition from scoring tries. Gareth Davies' try against Oz on an intercept and the 2 tries in the QF against France were all examples of defence scoring points. England keeping possession by playing attacking rugby, thus keeping the ball out of NZ's hands for long periods, is an example of attack stopping points from being scored against them. Ireland became the masters of this 'if they don't have the ball they can't score' strategy back in 2018. In their 6 nations match against Wales, the Welsh only had 30% possession or somesuch, yet scored 3 tries, so Ireland keeping the ball for 70% of the match was a big key to Ireland's win. Playing attacking rugby does not make a team vulnerable, it both scores points and prevents the opposition from having the ball that they need to score their own points.

Yet Gatland's negative, can't-attack, zero creativity, penalties-are-the-primary-way-of-scoring approach seems to have taken a firm hold on the Welsh psyche. I keep hearing Welsh fans comparing the future of their team to Scotland every time someone talks about them playing attacking rugby. Scotland's defence isn't rubbish because they play attacking rugby, Scotland's defence is rubbish because it's rubbish. Would Tipuric or Warburton have been any less of a jackal because they played in a side that played attacking rugby? Would Faletau hit any less hard because he played in a side that played attacking rugby? Would JD2 be any less of a defensive captain if he played in a side that played attacking rugby?

I, for one, hope that Pivac brings back the Wales Way. I read in the last couple of days that Gatland won more than he lost against only 4 of the 10 tier one nations over the last 12 years - Italy, Scotland, France and Argentina. Not exactly the powers of world rugby over that period. Against the other 6 tier one nations he finishes with a losing record. He has won 3 six nations in 10 years (or 4 in 12 if you want to include the Howley years), but he's done precious little else in those 12 long years. Yet phrases like 'punching above our weight' and 'fittest team in the world' are trundled out again and again by Welsh pundits as an excuse for poor play and predictable defeats, because they are intent on lauding the great man for making poor little old Wales competitive... o_O

So you're competitive. You made it. The next step is to become a team that wins things regularly. The game passed Gatland by long ago, it's time for the future.

Sorry, Bushy, not having a go at you, just don't like to see you so negative. You're usually the most cheerful one on these boards. Chin up, old boy! :)
 

Zapphod

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Well you can speak for yourself on this one.

I actually really dislike this attitude towards the 3rd & 4th play-off game. It often stinks of sour grapes and a sore loser mentality. It gives both teams a good opportunity to finish the season on a high. I remember this attitude in New Zealand towards this game came about after the disappointment in 1999 after losing to France and Taine Randall and John Hart made similar comments towards the game. Yes it's the losers final, yes we would rather be in the final, but it's still an opportunity to beat another good team and finish higher in the pecking order.

I care for the game, I don't want to finish 4th or lose to Wales, I'm sure the team feels the same way. I think it's good to establish who the 3rd best side was and 4th best in the touranment and the game should remain.

I for one am looking forward to the game and relish the chance of watching the All Blacks one more time this year and before some of our greats retire and I want to see them go out on a win.
If you are happy or at least prepared to accept mediocrity then good for you but the reality is there is only winning and losing and we lost no matter what the result of this game is.

As far as watching our greats play one more time you have reminded me of Micheal Jones who was a phenomenal player in his day but he stayed well past his day and changed from a great player into a sad reminder of what he used to be, I would sooner remember them in their prime than watch them try and rekindle their youth.

As for 2nd-8th place who cares the reward is the same you get to go to the next one as I said winning is the only prize.

As far as sour grapes or sore losing not at all, I never expected the ABs to win the cup and we were beaten by the better team on the day I have no qualms about game or the refereeing.
The fact is no one out there on Friday wants to be there not the All Blacks nor the Welsh they went there to win and nothing else and I am prepared to bet there isn't a single bronze medal winner since 1987 dining out on winning one which is why I would sooner see an 8th v 9th spot play off between teams with something to play for than 3rd v 4th.
 

mania

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If you are happy or at least prepared to accept mediocrity then good for you but the reality is there is only winning and losing and we lost no matter what the result of this game is.

As far as watching our greats play one more time you have reminded me of Micheal Jones who was a phenomenal player in his day but he stayed well past his day and changed from a great player into a sad reminder of what he used to be, I would sooner remember them in their prime than watch them try and rekindle their youth.

As for 2nd-8th place who cares the reward is the same you get to go to the next one as I said winning is the only prize.

As far as sour grapes or sore losing not at all, I never expected the ABs to win the cup and we were beaten by the better team on the day I have no qualms about game or the refereeing.
The fact is no one out there on Friday wants to be there not the All Blacks nor the Welsh they went there to win and nothing else and I am prepared to bet there isn't a single bronze medal winner since 1987 dining out on winning one which is why I would sooner see an 8th v 9th spot play off between teams with something to play for than 3rd v 4th.
woah; i hope you dont coach. being in your team would suk
theres more to life than just winning.
 

Kapa O Pango

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A good way to send off some of our great All Blacks in this game. It’s a shame Owen Franks will not be there.
 

ragerancher

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Gatland stuff

I think part of the reason people look at attack and defence being mutually exclusive is actually less to do with Gatland and more to do with the likes of Australia and SH sides. The problem with Australia in particular is that they are so attack orientated that they let it get in the way of pragmatism. Kicking the ball for territory is not deemed "attacking" as you cede possession, attacking can only be where you retain possession or do something with the aim of regaining it. Losing possession to gain territory is not deemed an attacking option. In many ways the NH is ahead in this regard in that we recognise that attack and defence flow together and that it is possible to make ground in defence and that an attacking mindset doesn't mean you have to try to run everything from everywhere. It's very much the SH teams that have been pushing this idea.

I suspect some Welsh think they are mutually exclusive because when they were an unsuccessful attacking side they had relatively poor defence and now they are a more successful defensive side they have relatively stunted attacking ability. For Wales the 2 have been exclusive and this is largely down to Gatland's stubbornness in sticking with Howley, a proven failure as an attack coach.
 

Alanx7

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Really I think we should just send out the coaching staff and send the players home.
As for finishing 3rd being a great achievement, off the top of your head how many bronze medal winners can you name from the last Olympics?
It is a losers final and nothing else, the result is meaningless at best and more embarrassing at worst there is nothing to gain from this match.

I would much sooner see a plate final for tier two teams or even combine the woman's world cup and have their final than watch this game.

I think you will find that there are a great many Bronze medal Olympic winners that are remembered....not the best example to argue this point?
 

bushytop

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I'm sorry, Bushy, but I can't follow the logic that 'what Gatland has done is very near miraculous' anymore than I can follow the logic that with Gatland gone, Wales will revert to losing heavily like they have in past decades. I'm was born in the mid-70s and I remember Wales playing fun, attacking rugby. Attacking rugby was the Wales Way, in the same way as Eddie Jones talks about playing rugby the Japan Way (super fast) or the England Way (set piece and power-led). Many were the times that I wished some of the kick-and-clap England teams would play the Wales Way back then! Then Gatland arrived and got Wales to play a much more negative and defence-obsessed style. He had some success with it, but he made them defensively stronger at the expense of their attack. And that's always been the biggest problem with Gatland and where I think he's done Wales a disservice: his style considers attack and defence as mutually exclusive - you can have one but not both. If Wales have a good defence, they can't have a good attack too can they? It stands to reason, so which do you want Wales? Which would you prefer? Have a good defence and stay in games and be competitive, or have a good attack and carry on getting regular thrashings, because you can't have both you know. This is the rhetoric that I've been hearing from Welsh fans and pundits for years. Gatland seems to have convinced them its an absolute truth. Gatland couldn't take the Welsh strength of playing attacking rugby (the Wales Way) and add to it, oh no, that was impossible, he had to scrap it in order to make them competitive... o_O

Gatland didn't sacrifice the attack to make the defence better and thus make Wales competitive, he's just rubbish at coaching attack. When Wales were at SA's tryline in the semi, they put together 20 phases that amounted to nothing more than a forward running straight into a defender 20 times. No guile, no offloads, no quick passes, cut-out passes, sidesteps, nothing. Four years ago, Wales couldn't score against Oz when they were down to 13 men. With France down to 14 in the QF this time around, Wales offered nothing in attack. But hey, they were competitive... o_O

Plenty of teams play good attacking rugby but also defend well. NZ are the best attacking side in the world, but their defence doesn't suffer because of it. England have played some lovely rugby in this tournament, but have still only conceded 4 tries in 5 matches. Japan have a lot of amateur players, yet they play sensational attacking rugby and their defence has hardly been a pushover - they gave up only 12 points to World Number One Ireland! The point is that in rugby, attack and defence are fluid - defence can score you tries and attack can stop your opposition from scoring tries. Gareth Davies' try against Oz on an intercept and the 2 tries in the QF against France were all examples of defence scoring points. England keeping possession by playing attacking rugby, thus keeping the ball out of NZ's hands for long periods, is an example of attack stopping points from being scored against them. Ireland became the masters of this 'if they don't have the ball they can't score' strategy back in 2018. In their 6 nations match against Wales, the Welsh only had 30% possession or somesuch, yet scored 3 tries, so Ireland keeping the ball for 70% of the match was a big key to Ireland's win. Playing attacking rugby does not make a team vulnerable, it both scores points and prevents the opposition from having the ball that they need to score their own points.

Yet Gatland's negative, can't-attack, zero creativity, penalties-are-the-primary-way-of-scoring approach seems to have taken a firm hold on the Welsh psyche. I keep hearing Welsh fans comparing the future of their team to Scotland every time someone talks about them playing attacking rugby. Scotland's defence isn't rubbish because they play attacking rugby, Scotland's defence is rubbish because it's rubbish. Would Tipuric or Warburton have been any less of a jackal because they played in a side that played attacking rugby? Would Faletau hit any less hard because he played in a side that played attacking rugby? Would JD2 be any less of a defensive captain if he played in a side that played attacking rugby?

I, for one, hope that Pivac brings back the Wales Way. I read in the last couple of days that Gatland won more than he lost against only 4 of the 10 tier one nations over the last 12 years - Italy, Scotland, France and Argentina. Not exactly the powers of world rugby over that period. Against the other 6 tier one nations he finishes with a losing record. He has won 3 six nations in 10 years (or 4 in 12 if you want to include the Howley years), but he's done precious little else in those 12 long years. Yet phrases like 'punching above our weight' and 'fittest team in the world' are trundled out again and again by Welsh pundits as an excuse for poor play and predictable defeats, because they are intent on lauding the great man for making poor little old Wales competitive... o_O

So you're competitive. You made it. The next step is to become a team that wins things regularly. The game passed Gatland by long ago, it's time for the future.

Sorry, Bushy, not having a go at you, just don't like to see you so negative. You're usually the most cheerful one on these boards. Chin up, old boy! :)
My point was not that you can’t be defensively strong while also having a stylish and effective attack... my point is simply Wales were a shambles for a long time. Under a Gatland we aren’t a Shambles... pragmatic, yes; overly structured, yes; negative, yes... clown shoes, thankfully no.

He has done this despite having to work with the products of our regional game which is an absolute mess. He has done this despite the constant in-fighting between the regions and the WRU... and amazingly he has been able to operate within the Welsh goldfish bowl of public scrutiny for over a decade without ever really becoming a pariah.

As I said in my original post, I would love nothing more than for Wales to move on post Gats and be successful while playing a attractive brand of rugby but I’m just all too aware of the realities at play here (think Vern’s Scotland and then Toonie’s Scotland but on a wider scale). I hope I’m wrong and will be the first to admit if I am.

The main message I wanted to convey though is it seems many younger Welsh fans have very little frame of context when judging Gatland’s reign here in Wales. The grass isn’t always greener and losing consistently but with style is nowhere near as fun as winning ugly. Gatland should receive many plaudits for the hard and effective work he has put in these last eleven years, not disdain from kids who have only ever known a side competing for honours during his run as Head Coach.
 

bushytop

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I think part of the reason people look at attack and defence being mutually exclusive is actually less to do with Gatland and more to do with the likes of Australia and SH sides. The problem with Australia in particular is that they are so attack orientated that they let it get in the way of pragmatism. Kicking the ball for territory is not deemed "attacking" as you cede possession, attacking can only be where you retain possession or do something with the aim of regaining it. Losing possession to gain territory is not deemed an attacking option. In many ways the NH is ahead in this regard in that we recognise that attack and defence flow together and that it is possible to make ground in defence and that an attacking mindset doesn't mean you have to try to run everything from everywhere. It's very much the SH teams that have been pushing this idea.

I suspect some Welsh think they are mutually exclusive because when they were an unsuccessful attacking side they had relatively poor defence and now they are a more successful defensive side they have relatively stunted attacking ability. For Wales the 2 have been exclusive and this is largely down to Gatland's stubbornness in sticking with Howley, a proven failure as an attack coach.
Totally agree that attack and defence are not mutually exclusive, people seem to be missing the point I’m making. My point is less to do with play style and more to do with raw achievements. Gatland has brought more success in eleven years than any Welsh man would’ve thought possible at the time. Regardless of his own rugby philosophies, he should be commended for that not derided.
 

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*trying to work out if everyone saying Wales have no chance are just trying to Jinx the AB's* ;)
 

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If you are happy or at least prepared to accept mediocrity then good for you but the reality is there is only winning and losing and we lost no matter what the result of this game is.

As far as watching our greats play one more time you have reminded me of Micheal Jones who was a phenomenal player in his day but he stayed well past his day and changed from a great player into a sad reminder of what he used to be, I would sooner remember them in their prime than watch them try and rekindle their youth.

As for 2nd-8th place who cares the reward is the same you get to go to the next one as I said winning is the only prize.

As far as sour grapes or sore losing not at all, I never expected the ABs to win the cup and we were beaten by the better team on the day I have no qualms about game or the refereeing.
The fact is no one out there on Friday wants to be there not the All Blacks nor the Welsh they went there to win and nothing else and I am prepared to bet there isn't a single bronze medal winner since 1987 dining out on winning one which is why I would sooner see an 8th v 9th spot play off between teams with something to play for than 3rd v 4th.

Interesting attitude. Just wondering, do you compete in anything? I'm not calling you out, you could be an Olympic athlete for all I know. I was just thinking because it seems like most really competitive people that are at a high level relish the chance to keep competing.

It reminds me of when I moved to Canada and watched the NFL for the first time. When a game was lost beyond doubt they just stop playing. I totally didn't get it and my friends thought I was crazy.
Then I had my friends come over and watch rugby and they didn't understand why teams still put their bodies on the line to try to score a try in the 81st minute when they had no chance of winning even if they scored. They just didn't get it.

I guess it's just a different attitude.
 

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Interesting attitude. Just wondering, do you compete in anything? I'm not calling you out, you could be an Olympic athlete for all I know. I was just thinking because it seems like most really competitive people that are at a high level relish the chance to keep competing.

It reminds me of when I moved to Canada and watched the NFL for the first time. When a game was lost beyond doubt they just stop playing. I totally didn't get it and my friends thought I was crazy.
Then I had my friends come over and watch rugby and they didn't understand why teams still put their bodies on the line to try to score a try in the 81st minute when they had no chance of winning even if they scored. They just didn't get it.

I guess it's just a different attitude.

Not sure I want to bore anyone to tears with my life's story.
Needless to say, I try to be rather pragmatic so I understand that Canadian viewpoint.
:)
 

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Team Announced

1. Joe Moody (44)
2. Dane Coles (68)
3. Nepo Laulala (24)
4. Brodie Retallick (80)
5. Scott Barrett (35)
6. Shannon Frizell (8)
7. Sam Cane (67)
8. Kieran Read - captain (126)
9. Aaron Smith (91)
10. Richie Mo’unga (16)
11. Rieko Ioane (28)
12. Sonny Bill Williams (56)
13. Ryan Crotty (47)
14. Ben Smith (83)
15. Beauden Barrett (82)


16. Liam Coltman (7)
17. Atu Moli (7)
18. Angus Ta'avao (13)
19. Patrick Tuipulotu (29)
20. Matt Todd (24)
21. Brad Weber (4)
22. Anton Lienert-Brown (41)
23. Jordie Barrett (16)

strong but i think people like weber could have got a start without fielding a B team and for the love of god couldn't Smith have started at 15 for his last game
 
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