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5 players from Ngāti Porou named in “Maori All Blacks”

fijimaori2015Māori All Blacks squad to play Fiji and New Zealand Barbarians named

The Māori All Blacks 2015 squad to play Fiji and the New Zealand Barbarians next month was named in Wellington today and features 10 new caps.

The squad will again be captained by Chiefs midfield back Charlie Ngatai.

The Māori All Blacks squad is:

FORWARDS
HOOKERS
Joe Royal ~ Te Arawa/Ngāti Whātua o Ōrākei/Ngāpuhi – Bay of Plenty
Ash Dixon ~ Ngāti Tahinga – Hawke’s Bay
Quentin MacDonald* ~ Rangitāne – Tasman
PROPS
Chris Eves ~ Tainui – Manawatu
Brendon Edmonds ~ Ngāti Kahungunu – Hawke’s Bay
Josh Hohneck* ~ Ngāti Whātua/Ngāti Manuhiri – Waikato
Ben May ~ Ngāti Maniapoto – Wellington
LOCKS
Hayden Triggs ~ Ngāti Kahungunu Auckland
Jacob Skeen* ~ Ngāpuhi Waikato
Blade Thomson ~ Ngāpuhi Taranaki
LOOSE FORWARDS
Shane Christie ~ Te Atihaunui a Paparangi/Ngāti Kurawhatia – Tasman
Elliot Dixon ~ Ngāpuhi – Southland
Akira Ioane* ~ Te Whānau-ā-Apanui – Auckland
Heiden Bedwell-Curtis ~ Ngāpuhi – Manawatu
Mitchell Crosswell ~ Ngāti Porou – Taranaki
BACKS
HALFBACKS
Jamison Gibson-Park ~ Ngāti Porou/Ngā Tai – Taranaki
Brad Weber* ~ Ngāti Porou – Waikato
FIRST FIVE-EIGHTH
Damian McKenzie* ~ Ngāti Tūwharetoa – Waikato
Otere Black* ~ Ngāi Tuhoe/Te Whānau-ā-Apanui/Ngāti Tūwharetoa – Manawatu
MIDFIELD BACKS
Jason Emery ~ Ngāti Haua/Ngāti Maniapoto – Manawatu
Charlie Ngatai (c) ~ Ngāti Porou/Te Whanau-a-Apanui – Taranaki
Sean Wainui* ~ Ngāi Tuhoe/Ngāti Porou – Taranaki
OUTSIDE BACKS
Kurt Baker ~ Ngāpuhi – Taranaki
Rieko Ioane* ~ Te Whānau-ā-Apanui – Auckland
Marty McKenzie ~ Ngāti Tūwharetoa – Taranaki
Matt Proctor ~ Ngāi te Rangi/Ngāpuhi – Wellington
Codey Rei* ~ Ngā Ruahine/Te Ātiawa – Taranaki

*new cap

2014 Māori All Blacks squad members not available because of injury were; Tom Franklin, Mike Kainga, James Lowe, Sean Polwart, Dan Pryor and Joe Webber.

The 27-strong squad departs for Fiji on Wednesday 8 July.

Strong squad for 2015

Coach Colin Cooper said the 2015 squad was an exciting mix of experienced hands and promising young talent. It includes 13 players who took part in last year’s tour to Japan and three members of the successful New Zealand Under 20 team which won the recent World Championship title in Italy.

“This is a well-balanced side with some very experienced campaigners who have now played on several tours and know our systems well. I’ll be expecting them to lead by example and show the new boys the high standards we expect.

“We have a proud record of success to uphold and I am sure this side will work hard to honour the great legacy of the Māori All Blacks,” said Cooper.

Exciting young talent on display

“It is very pleasing to introduce some exciting new talent to the 2015 side. Akira Ioane has really impressed with the Blues this year and both he, Otere Black and Sean Wainui are coming off the great win for New Zealand Under 20 at the World Championship in Italy so I am sure they will want to carry on that form. Rieko Ioane will also provide great pace out wide and he’s hugely matured with the All Blacks Sevens this year despite still only being 18 years old.

“We’ve also seen how well Damian McKenzie has equipped himself in his first season at the Chiefs which is a huge test for any young man. He’s shown incredible maturity so he along with his brother Marty who toured with us last year, will strengthen the backline,” said Cooper.

Fans urged to support the Māori All Blacks at Eden Park

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“We’re really looking forward to this tour. These players have a great opportunity to test their skills against a tough international opponent in Fiji as it looks to build for the Rugby World Cup and the Barbarians match will also be a stiff contest.

“We hope fans come out and support the Māori All Blacks at home as we haven’t played in New Zealand since 2010. This is a top chance to see some of the best players in the country test their skills against what we expect to be a very strong Barbarians side.

“We know the Barbarians also have a proud reputation to uphold like us so I think fans will be in for a great display of attacking rugby. It’s also a huge opportunity for players to continue to press for selection for the All Blacks Rugby World Cup squad so there will be a lot at stake. It should be a fantastic match.”


Māori All Blacks 2015 matches

  • Saturday 11 July v Fiji, ANZ National Stadium, Suva. Kickoff 3pm
  • Saturday 18 July v New Zealand Barbarians, Eden Park, Auckland. Kickoff 7.35pm

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