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Thread: Tuivasa-Sheck earns first AB call-up

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    Immortal Contributor The InnFORCEr's Avatar
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    Tuivasa-Sheck earns first AB call-up

    Mon, 13/06/2022, 10:12 am
    Reuters



    Former NRL star Roger Tuivasa-Sheck and his Super Rugby Pacific teammate Stephen Perofeta have been included in the All Blacks squad for the July series against Ireland, but there was no room for experienced halfback TJ Perenara.

    Tuivasa-Sheck and Perofeta were among six uncapped players named on Monday along with prop Aidan Ross, loose forward Pita Gus Sowakula, scrumhalf Folau Fakatava and outside back Leicester Fainga'anuku.

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    Livewire Fakatava's inclusion along with Aaron Smith and Finlay Christie meant there was no place for Brad Weber or Perenara, who has been almost ever-present in the New Zealand set-up since 2014.

    "We've had five nines playing really well," coach Ian Foster said.

    "So narrowing that down, we just feel that with Folau and Finlay, they offer something a bit different and a chance to see how we can incorporate that into an All Blacks game."

    Tuivasa-Sheck, the former Sydney Roosters and Warriors back, made the switch to the 15-man code with the intent of making the All Blacks squad for next year's World Cup in France and his inclusion is another step towards that goal for the fleet-footed Blues centre.

    "We've been delighted with his progress, particularly in the last four or five weeks," Foster added.

    "It's a chance to get him in and have a look at him. While he's earned his spot in there, there's a lot to learn."

    With Damian McKenzie ineligible after his sabbatical in Japan, Perofeta - also a goal-kicking fullback who can slot in at flyhalf - gets his reward for his fine form with the Blues.

    Openside flanker Sam Cane was retained as captain in a loose forward selection that included the popular Sowakula, who was perhaps the beneficiary of the shoulder injury to the similarly versatile Ethan Blackadder.

    Ireland beat the All Blacks 29-20 in Dublin last November, one of two defeats on New Zealand's end-of-year tour that rang alarms bells back home.

    The series opens at Auckland's Eden Park on July 2 with Tests in Dunedin and Wellington following over the next two Saturdays.

    Ireland will also play the Maori All Blacks in a tour match in Hamilton on June 29.

    ALL BLACKS SQUAD
    Forwards: Codie Taylor, Samisoni Taukei'aho, Dane Coles, Nepo Laulala, Ofa Tuungafasi, Angus Ta'avao, Karl Tu'inukuafe, George Bower, Aidan Ross, Brodie Retallick, Sam Whitelock, Josh Lord, Tupou Vaa'i, Scott Barrett, Sam Cane (capt), Pita Gus Sowakula, Ardie Savea, Dalton Papalii, Akira Ioane, Hoskins Sotutu.

    Backs: Aaron Smith, Folau Fakatava, Finlay Christie, Beauden Barrett, Stephen Perofeta, Richie Mo'unga, Rieko Ioane, Jack Goodhue, Quinn Tupaea, Roger Tuivasa-Sheck, David Havili, Leicester Fainga'anuku, Caleb Clarke, Sevu Reece, Jordie Barrett, Will Jordan.

    https://www.rugby.com.au/news/all-bl...callup-2022613

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    Immortal Contributor shasta's Avatar
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    Immortal Contributor shasta's Avatar
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    But seriously, for a sec: the only surprise for me was the Blues selecting him as 12, and mainly carting the ball into the line.

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    Has he the coat hanger in his arsenal?

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