Julian Savea dropped as Steve Hansen names All Blacks squad


alblksJULIAN Savea remains on the periphery of the All Blacks after being left out of Steve Hansen’s 33-man squad for the Rugby Championship, which kicks off against the Wallabies in Sydney on August 19.

Savea, New Zealand’s equal second highest tryscorer of all time with 46, was left out of the All Blacks’ side for the opening two Tests against the British and Irish Lions in June, before starting the third Test on the left wing.

But the powerful 27-year-old, whose nickname is ‘The Bus,’ had an unhappy night in the drawn Test and came under fire for bombing an early chance at Eden Park by dropping the ball with the line in sight.

Crusaders flanker Matt Todd was also left out with Hansen unable to squeeze three No 7’s into his squad.

“The first two Bledisloe Cup matches will set the tone, as we know the Australians will throw everything at us, while we’re expecting the South Africans and Argentinians to be as bruising and physical as always.

All Blacks squad

Forwards: Dane Coles, Nathan Harris, Codie Taylor, Wyatt Crockett, Owen Franks, Nepo Laulala, Joe Moody, Ofa Tu’ungafasi, Scott Barrett, Brodie Retallick, Luke Romano, Samuel Whitelock, Sam Cane, Vaea Fifita, Jerome Kaino, Kieran Read (c), Ardie Savea, Liam Squire

Backs: Tawera Kerr-Barlow, TJ Perenara, Aaron Smith, Beauden Barrett, Lima Sopoaga, Ryan Crotty, Ngani Laumape, Anton Lienert-Brown, Sonny Bill Williams, Jordie Barrett, Israel Dagg, Rieko Ioane, Nehe Milner-Skudder, Waisake Naholo, Ben Smith

Replacement player: Damian McKenzie