October 7, 2015
Rugby World Cup Lineups: New Zealand v Tonga
October 9, 2015
New Zealand v Tonga, Pool C, St James Park, Newcastle upon Tyne, Kick off 20:00 – 3pm ET
Referee: George Clancy Assistant Referee: Romain Poite, Stuart Berry; TV Match Official: Shaun Veldsman
New Zealand have made sic changes in the starting lineup that won against Georgia. Richies McCaw is being rested and Kieran Read takes over a captian for this match.
“Ma’a Nonu returns to the starting line-up to become the sixth All Black to make his 100th career test appearance, behind Richie McCaw (145), Keven Mealamu (128), Tony Woodcock (117), Dan Carter (108) and Mils Muliaina (100).” (RWC2015)
New Zealand will be the top seed from Pool C entering the Quarterfinals where they will face the loser of Sunday’s Pool match, France vs. Ireland.
Tonga has made only one change from there loss to Argentina. Latiume Fosita replaces Sione Piukala at inside center. Their starters average over 30 years and have 360 caps. Tonga are playing for national pride and embrace the chance to compete against the All Blacks.
New Zealand Ranked 1st: HC Steve Hansen Starters: 1. Tony Woodcock 2. Dane Coles 3. Owen Franks 4. Luke Romano 5. Samuel Whitelock 6. Jerome Kaino 7. Sam Cane 8. Kieran Read (c) 9. Aaron Smith 10. Daniel Carter 11. Waisake Naholo 12. Ma’a Nonu 13. Conrad Smith 14. Nehe Milner-Skudder 15. Ben Smith Replacements: 16. Keven Mealamu 17. Wyatt Crockett 18. Ben Franks 19. Brodie Retallick 20. Liam Messam 21. Tawera Kerr-Barlow 22. Beauden Barrett 23. Sonny Bill Williams
Tonga Ranked 13th: HC Mana Otai Starters: 1. Soane Tonga’uiha 2. Elvis Taione 3. Halani ‘Aulika 4. Tukulua Lokotui 5. Joseph Tuineau 6. Sione Kalamafoni 7. Nili Latu (c) 8. Viliami Ma’afu 9. Sonatane Takulua 10. Kurt Morath 11. Fetu’u Vainikolo 12. Latiume Fosita 13. Siale Piutau 14. Telusa Veainu 15. Vungakoto Lilo Replacements: 16. Paula Ngauamo 17. Sona Taumalolo 18. Sila Puafisi 19. Sitiveni Mafi 20. Jack Ram 21. Samisoni Fisilau 22. Viliami Tahitua 23. Will Helu