Wales v New Zealand: All Blacks name strong side for Cardiff Test

WALES V NEW ZEALAND

  • Venue: Millennium Stadium, Cardiff
  • Date: 24 November, 2012
  • Kick-off: 1715 GMT

Coverage: Live on BBC Two, HD and Online, & S4C; Commentary on BBC 5 live, Radio Wales & Radio Cymru; live video, audio and text commentary on BBC Sport website

New Zealand have brought captain Richie McCaw and fly-half Dan Carter back into a full-strength side for Saturday's Test against Wales in Cardiff.

Flanker McCaw was rested for last week's 42-10 win over Italy  while Carter started the match on the bench.

Also returning to the starting XV are full-back Israel Dagg, wing Cory Jane and prop Owen Franks.

In all, there are eight changes, with Liam Messam retaining his place at blind-side flanker.

Adam Thomson was not considered for selection after the International Rugby Board (IRB) announced it was appealing against what it regards as the leniency of his one-match ban for stamping in the Test against Scotland a fortnight ago. 

LAST SIX MEETINGS

  • Nov 2010: Wales 25-37 NZ
  • Jun 2010: NZ 29-10 Wales
  • Jun 2010: NZ 42-9 Wales
  • Nov 2009: Wales 12-19 NZ
  • Nov 2008: Wales 9-29 NZ
  • Nov 2006: Wales 10-45 NZ

Andrew Hore has got the nod at hooker for the Millennium Stadium clash after Keven Mealamu was ruled out by a calf injury.

Winger Julian Savea gets his third straight start in the autumn internationals after scoring two tries in the 51-22 win over Scotland and two more against against Italy.

"We have always known that this game will be a fiercely contested match," said All Blacks head coach Steve Hansen.

"We have known since the World Cup that this would be the the game Wales would be targeting in this series.

"So any recent performances or results won't have any bearing on this match."

Grand Slam champions Wales have lost their last five Tests and have not beaten the All Blacks since 1953.

World champions New Zealand are unbeaten in 19 Tests going back to last year's loss against Australia in Brisbane.

New Zealand team: Israel Dagg; Cory Jane, Conrad Smith, Ma'a Nonu, Julian Savea; Dan Carter, Aaron Smith; Tony Woodcock, Andrew Hore, Owen Franks, Luke Romano, Sam Whitelock, Liam Messam, Richie McCaw (captain), Kieran Read.

Replacements: Dane Coles, Wyatt Crockett, Charlie Faumuina, Brodie Retallick, Victor Vito, Piri Weepu, Aaron Cruden, Ben Smith.