Welcome to live coverage of the All Blacks’ decider against Ireland in Wellington. Kick-off: 5:05pm AEST.
The All Blacks have been dealt a major blow ahead of their series decider against Ireland in Wellington with star forward Scott Barrett having been ruled out at the 11th hour.
New Zealand media had speculated during the week that the Crusaders captain was in doubt for the third Test at Sky Stadium due to what is believed to be a injury to his knee.
Blue forward Akira Ioane has been named for his first Test of the year, and is set to replace Barrett at blindside flanker.
Lock Tupou Vaa’i has been promoted to the bench, and will provide cover for stalwarts Brodie Retallick and Samuel Whitelock who have been named to start.
But if Ian Foster was feeling the pinch he certainly wasn’t showing it on Thursday, as he named his squad for Saturday’s decider against Ireland.