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New Zealand Without Carter And McCaw Is A Lot Scarier Than We Could Have Imagined

New Zealand Without Carter And McCaw Is A Lot Scarier Than We Could Have Imagined
By Conor O'Leary
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For those who are unaware - the recently expanded Super Rugby tournament has been a bit farcical. The competition is split into two groups - one for New Zealand and Australia, and one for South Africa, Japan, and Argentina.

The gap between the New Zealand teams and everyone else is so large, that four of the New Zealand franchises have the top four amount of points, with the fifth (the Blues) only five points from making it a 1-2-3-4-5. New Zealand are so good right now, and as the two-time defending World Champions, their squad for their upcoming Wales series is downright scary good.

What's worse - the average age of the squad is 25; and with the talent around the country at the moment it can only get better.

There are nine new caps in the team - most notably Damian McKenzie who is lighting up Super Rugby - joining a team shorn of Dan Carter, Ma'a Nonu, Sonny Bill Williams, Conrad Smith, and Richie McCaw.

New Zealand Squad For Wales Series:



Dane Coles (Wellington, 36 Tests)
Codie Taylor (Canterbury, four Tests)
Nathan Harris (Bay of Plenty, two Tests)



Wyatt Crockett (Canterbury, 45 Tests)
Charlie Faumuina (Auckland, 33 Tests)
Owen Franks (Canterbury, 78 Tests)
Joe Moody (Canterbury, 11 Tests)
Ofa Tu'ungafasi (Auckland, new cap)


Brodie Retallick (Hawke's Bay, 47 Tests)
Luke Romano (Canterbury, 22 Tests)
Patrick Tuipulotu (Auckland, seven Tests)
Samuel Whitelock (Canterbury, 73 Tests)


Loose Forwards

Sam Cane (Bay of Plenty, 31 Tests)
Elliot Dixon (Southland, new cap)
Jerome Kaino (Auckland, 67 Tests)
Kieran Read, captain (Canterbury, 84 Tests)
Ardie Savea (Wellington, new cap)
Liam Squire (Tasman, new cap)




Tawera Kerr-Barlow (Waikato, 20 Tests)
Aaron Smith (Manawatu, 47 Tests)

First five-eighths

Beauden Barrett (Taranaki, 36 Tests)
Aaron Cruden (Manawatu, 37 Tests)
Lima Sopoaga (Southland, one Test)



Ryan Crotty (Canterbury, 15 Tests)
Malakai Fekitoa (Auckland, 13 Tests)
Charlie Ngatai (Taranaki, one Test)
Seta Tamanivalu (Taranaki, new cap)

Outside backs


Israel Dagg (Hawke's Bay, 49 Tests)
Damian McKenzie (Waikato, new cap)
Waisake Naholo (Taranaki, three Tests)
Julian Savea (Wellington, 41 Tests)
Ben Smith (Otago, 48 Tests)

Just think of the XV of talent that they aren't picking: Nehe Milner-Skudder, Rene Ranger, George Moala Anton Lienert-Brown, James Lowe, Richie Mo'ounga, TJ Perenara, Akira Ioane, Matt Todd, Jordan Taufua, Steven Luatua, James Broadhurst, Nepo Laulua, Hika Elliott, Mitchell Graham.

It's a bad year for Ireland to be playing them twice.


See Also: South Africa Have Released Their Squad For Ireland's Upcoming Tour

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