All Blacks

Barrett to start at 10 against Wallabies

RNZ reports Barrett played a leading role in guiding the Hurricanes to their maiden Super Rugby title and that form has been rewarded with the playmaker usurping Cruden, who was the All Blacks first-choice first-five in the June test series against Wales.

Chiefs hooker Nathan Harris will start in the number 2 jersey as Dane Coles continues to recover from the rib injury that he played through in the Super Rugby final.

Sam Cane has retained his place at openside, with the in-form Ardie Savea to be used off the bench.

New-look Wallabies on the Bledisloe radar

There are four uncapped players in the current squad - Reece Hodge, Lopeti Timani, Allan Alaalatoa and Tom Robertson - and Wallabies coach Michael Cheika said he wouldn’t be counting them out of the Bledisloe.

“There might be a chance there somewhere in the 23, like a genuine chance,” he said.

“It really comes down to what we think is the best combination for the starting team and what'll happen, then that'll decide how the finishers look.

“There's a genuine possibility that someone could, it just depends on the mix that we go with in the starting team.”

Savea in last chance saloon?

The down on confidence and out of from wing has been benched for the Hurricanes last two playoff wins though he has retained his place in the All Blacks' squad.

Nehe Milner-Skudder is a shoe-in for selection when he returns from injury, while Ben Smith, Waisake Naholo and Israel Dagg are the current first choice back three.

Hart said the Rugby Championship will be Julian Savea's last chance to prove he belongs in the team.

Sonny Bill set for All Blacks return

Williams is set to return from the Rio Games the week of the All Blacks second test against the Wallabies in Wellington on the 27th August.

Williams is joined in the midfield by Ryan Crotty, Malakai Fekitoa and George Moala, while Seta Taminivalu, who made his debut against Wales, misses out.

Hansen will stay on for 2019 World Cup


Hansen was contracted through until the end of next year's British and Irish Lions tour.

Following the world cup win over Australia in November, Hansen indicated he was unlikely to continue through to 2019 but has had a change of heart.

Size key for under done All Blacks Sevens

The New Zealanders have been decimated by injuries in the first two rounds and stand seventh on the table.

Sir Gordon Tietjen's men will defend their Wellington title with a mixture of players that include a number of fifteens' stars, such as Sonny Bill Williams and Ardie Savea, hoping to crack the squad for the Rio Olympics.

Baby Ayla Collins to spend her first Christmas surrounded by family in Canada

Little Ayla Collins will spend her first Christmas with her maternal grandparents and her aunts, uncles and cousins in Canada.

Darrell and Ruth Madill have looked after the eight-month-old baby since the former All Black and his partner daughter were killed in a car crash in France on June 5. 

Long haul flight may have led to Jonah Lomu's death

Former All Blacks doctor John Mayhew told the BBC that Lomu would have felt little pain when he died suddenly last week.

Mayhew spoke to BBC Five Live last night and said: "He returned from the UK via Dubai and appeared to be in good health before he died."

"We think the most likely cause was a clot on the lung which can be a complication of long distance travel. Jonah was at greater risk of that happening because of his renal condition."

Jonah Lomu remembered at Mangere service

In the church he used to go to as boy, the Lotofale'ia Methodist Church in Mangere, 40 candles were lit on a table at the front to represent each of the years of the rugby great's life. Jonah Lomu died suddenly last week after suffering for many years from a chronic and serious kidney disorder.

Music filled the church during yesterday's three hour service, from traditional Tongan and modern singing and a brass band, and people came to tell stories about "their son".

Huge crowd expected at memorial service for Jonah Lomu

The memorial service at the Lotofalei'a Tongan Methodist Church in Mangere is the first public event for the rugby legend since he died on Wednesday, aged 40.