Brodie Retallick to captain All Blacks against Argentina

Brodie Retallick
Brodie Retallick. File photo
Brodie Retallick has been named All Blacks captain for their Rugby Championship test against Argentina in Brisbane on Sunday.

Retallick will become the 71st All Blacks test captain, replacing Ardie Savea who is being rested after picking up a head knock against the Wallabies last weekend.

In the starting front row, hooker Asafo Aumua will be making his first test start, alongside Karl Tu'inukuafe, who comes in for George Bower, and Nepo Laulala.

Prop Joe Moody will make his eagerly-awaited return to the national side via the bench after undergoing foot surgery this year. Tyrel Lomax is the other reserve prop, coming into the 23 for his third test of the year. Samisoni Taukei'aho is reserve hooker.

In the second row, Scott Barrett will once again start alongside Retallick, with Tupou Vaa'i again the reserve lock. In the loose forwards, Luke Jacobson comes in at number eight for his third test start of the year, alongside Akira Ioane at six and Dalton Papalii in the seven jersey. Ethan Blackadder will once again provide loose forward impact from the bench.

In the backs, TJ Perenara starts at halfback with Brad Weber reserve, and Beauden Barrett is at 10 in his 95th test. David Havili and Anton Lienert-Brown are again the midfield pairing, George Bridge will start on the left wing, with Sevu Reece coming in on the right and Jordie Barrett is again at fullback. Damian McKenzie and Rieko Ioane are the back reserves.

All Blacks head coach Ian Foster said: "We've had a great build-up in Perth and we're looking forward to getting to Queensland to finish our preparation. The key to selection this week has been about managing the player workload across the whole squad, which I think all teams will be doing in the Championship. We want to ensure we have a fresh, excited squad ready to play a physical and passionate Argentinian team.

"They've had a tough time on the road with matches in Europe and South Africa before coming to Australia. But we know from last year that when they spend a lot of time together it really unifies them, so we're expecting a torrid game."

Foster said he was delighted to name Brodie Retallick as the captain for this test.

"Brodie is a great leader in this team and we don't take his leadership for granted. We think this is a great honour for him, and he and his family can be hugely proud. He's playing really well and leads from the front. He has come back into the black jersey this year and just picked up where he left off.

"He also has an experienced partner in Beaudy (Barrett) alongside him who is bringing a calmness to the team and a sense of direction and we're seeing that in the way he plays."

All Blacks matchday 23 is (test caps in brackets):

1. Karl Tu'inukuafe (20)
2. Asafo Aumua (2)
3. Nepo Laulala (34)
4. Brodie Retallick – captain (86)
5. Scott Barrett (44)
6. Akira Ioane (7)
7. Dalton Papalii (8)
8. Luke Jacobson (7)
9. TJ Perenara (71)
10. Beauden Barrett (94)
11. George Bridge (13)
12. David Havili (8)
13. Anton Lienert-Brown (52)
14. Sevu Reece (12)
15. Jordie Barrett (28)

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16. Samisoni Taukei'aho (4)
17. Joe Moody (50)
18. Tyrel Lomax (8)
19. Tupou Vaa'i (5)
20. Ethan Blackadder (3)
21. Brad Weber (11)
22. Damian McKenzie (33)
23. Rieko Ioane (40)

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