Lomax in All Blacks squad to play Japan

Highlander Tyrel Lomax. Photo: Getty Images
Highlander Tyrel Lomax. Photo: Getty Images
Highlanders prop Tyrel Lomax has made a quick rise up the ranks and made the All Black squad to play Japan next month.

Coach Steve Hansen this afternoon named a 51-man squad for the end of the year tests.

Lomax only become available last year after declaring for New Zealand and is in the squad of 19 which will take on Japan.

Ben Smith is the only Otago player in the main All Black squad which will play Australia in the final Bledisloe test in Japan on October 27.

Liam Coltman is in the 19 players picked for the Japanese test.

The return of Dane Coles and Nepo Laulala from long-term injury and the selection of openside flanker Matt Todd highlighted the squad named at 1pm.

Auckland's Dalton Papali'i makes a break during the Mitre 10 Cup match against North Harbour on...
Auckland's Dalton Papali'i makes a break during the Mitre 10 Cup match against North Harbour on Sunday. Photo: Getty Images
Auckland loose forward Dalton Papali'i was the only uncapped player named in the 32-man squad for the tour that includes tests against Australia, Japan, England, Ireland and Italy. 

“We congratulate Dalton on being named in the 32-man squad for the tour, " Hansen said today. "He has played outstanding rugby this year and deserves his opportunity."

Coles and Laulala both made their returns to the field over the weekend in New Zealand's provincial championship along with fellow front rower Joe Moody, who missed most of the Rugby Championship after he broke this thumb against Australia.

Coles (31), ruptured knee ligaments against France in November last year and needed two operations before a calf injury further delayed his return.

The 56-test hooker had been named in the Rugby Championship squad but did not feature at all and only made his comeback off the bench for Wellington on Friday for about 15 minutes.

Laulala broke his arm early in the Super Rugby season and also needed two operations to fix the issue.

The 26-year-old showcased his readiness for a return to the national side with a strong performance against Moody in Counties Manukau's clash against Canterbury in south Auckland on Saturday, forcing a succession of scrum penalties before the Cantabrian settled into his work.

Liam Squire is recovering from a hand injury. Photo: Getty Images
Liam Squire is recovering from a hand injury. Photo: Getty Images

Todd was expected to have been unavailable for the tour, having signed a short-term contract in Japan, but has been called in after Sam Cane suffered a broken bone in his neck against South Africa in the Rugby Championship.

Loose forward Liam Squire (hand) and lock Brodie Retallick (shoulder) were also recalled to an otherwise predictable squad for the northern tour.

Australia and the All Blacks play the third Bledisloe Cup test in Yokohama on October 27, with New Zealand having already wrapped up the annual series 2-0 after wins in Sydney and Auckland. They have held the trans-Tasman trophy since 2003. 

The All Blacks will take on Japan in Tokyo on November 3, England at Twickenham in London on November 11, Ireland in Dublin on November 18 and Italy in Rome on November 25.

Coach Steve Hansen has named 51 players for the end of year tests. Photo: Getty Images
Coach Steve Hansen has named 51 players for the end of year tests. Photo: Getty Images

32-MAN SQUAD FOR NORTHERN TESTS

Forwards: Dane Coles, Codie Taylor, Nathan Harris, Joe Moody, Karl Tu'inukuafe, Owen Franks, Nepo Laulala, Ofa Tuungafasi, Brodie Retallick, Sam Whitelock, Scott Barrett, Patrick Tuipulotu, Ardie Savea, Matt Todd, Dalton Papali'i*, Liam Squire, Vaea Fifita, Kieran Read (captain).

Backs: Aaron Smith, TJ Perenara, Te Toiroa Tahuriorangi, Beauden Barrett, Richie Mo'unga, Damian McKenzie, Sonny Bill Williams, Ryan Crotty, Jack Goodhue, Anton Lienert-Brown, Waisake Naholo, Rieko Ioane, Jordie Barrett, Ben Smith.

EXTENDED SQUAD FOR JAPAN GAME

Liam Coltman, Asafo Aumua*, Tim Perry, Angus Ta'avao, Tyrel Lomax*, Reuben O'Neill*, Luke Romano, Jackson Hemopo, Gareth Evans*, Dillon Hunt*, Luke Whitelock, Mitchell Drummond*, Bryn Hall*, Brett Cameron*, Ngani Laumape, Matt Proctor*, David Havili, Nehe Milner-Skudder, George Bridge*.

* denotes uncapped player 

- Additional reporting by Reuters 

 

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