The 81st inter-island match takes place on Saturday 29 August
The squads for New Zealand’s long-awaited North v South match have been named. It takes place on Saturday 29 August. The venue for the match is yet to be decided.
The contest between New Zealand’s North and South Islands was first held in 1897 and was a regular occurrence until 1986, with a hiatus until 1995, when there was a one-off game. There was not another inter-island contest until 2012 when a fundraising match was held in Dunedin. There have been 80 games in total, with the North winning 50, the South taking 27, and three draws mixed in.
After that last fundraiser, this fixture returns with an official All Blacks stamp.
The squads have been picked by All Blacks selectors Ian Foster, Grant Fox and John Plumtree, with national assistant coaches directing the two outfits. Plumtree and Scott McLeod will look after the North and Brad Mooar and Greg Feek helm the South.
Vastly-experienced lock Sam Whitelock has been named as captain of the South side and Patrick Tuipulotu leads the North.
Players qualify for either of the North or South squads depending on which was the first New Zealand province they played for.
Hookers: Asafo Aumua (Wellington), Ash Dixon (Hawke’s Bay) and Kurt Eklund (Auckland).
Props: Alex Fidow (Wellington), Ayden Johnstone (Waikato), Angus Ta’avao (Auckland), Karl Tu’inukuafe (North Harbour) and Ofa Tuungafasi (Auckland).
Locks: Scott Scrafton (Auckland), Patrick Tuipulotu (Auckland and captain) and Tupou Vaa’i (Taranaki).
Loose forwards: Lachlan Boshier (Taranaki), Akira Ioane (Auckland), Dalton Papalii (Auckland), Ardie Savea (Wellington) and Hoskins Sotutu (Auckland).
Halfbacks: TJ Perenara (Wellington), Aaron Smith (Manawatu) and Te Toiroa Tahuriorangi (Taranaki).
Flyhalves: Beauden Barrett (Taranaki).
Midfielders: Rieko Ioane (Auckland), Anton Lienert-Brown (Waikato) and Peter Umaga-Jensen (Wellington).
Outside backs: Caleb Clarke (Auckland), Mitchell Hunt (Auckland), Damian McKenzie (Waikato), Sevu Reece (Waikato) and Mark Telea (North Harbour).
Hookers: Liam Coltman (Otago), Andrew Makalio (Tasman) and Codie Taylor (Canterbury).
Props: George Bower (Otago), Alex Hodgman (Canterbury), Nepo Laulala (Canterbury), Tyrel Lomax (Tasman) and Joe Moody (Canterbury).
Locks: Mitchell Dunshea (Canterbury), Manaaki Selby-Rickit (Southland) and Samuel Whitelock (Canterbury and captain).
Loose forwards: Tom Christie (Canterbury), Shannon Frizell (Tasman), Dillon Hunt (Otago), Reed Prinsep (Canterbury) and Tom Sanders (Canterbury).
Halfbacks: Finlay Christie (Tasman), Mitchell Drummond (Canterbury) and Brad Weber (Otago).
Flyhalves: Josh Ioane (Otago) and Richie Mo’unga (Canterbury).
Midfielders: Braydon Ennor (Canterbury), Leicester Faingaanuku (Tasman), Jack Goodhue (Canterbury) and Sio Tomkinson (Otago).
Outside backs: Jordie Barrett (Canterbury), George Bridge (Canterbury) and Will Jordan (Tasman).
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