New Zealand reveals All Blacks for RWC 2011
23 Aug 2011
All Black coach Graham Henry has revealed his 30-man squad for the Rugby World Cup - 17 days out from kick-off.
Richie McCaw will captain the 16 forward, 14 back split - with 1,133 test caps between them it’s the most experienced All Blacks squad ever assembled.
Taking part in their third consecutive Rugby World Cup tournament are five of the team’s leading players: McCaw, Daniel Carter, Keven Mealamu, Mils Muliaina and Ali Williams.
Seven players - Corey Flynn, Ma’a Nonu, Brad Thorn, Tony Woodcock, Andy Ellis, Conrad Smith and Isaia Toeava - will be playing in their second tournament.
Ultimate rugby challenge
Graham Henry says he is pleased with the strength of his squad.
"Firstly, I would like to congratulate all those players selected. It's an incredibly exciting time for the team and a unique opportunity to represent New Zealand at home. The players will be facing the ultimate rugby challenge - playing for the most coveted trophy in world rugby, the Rugby World Cup," Henry said.
"At the same time I want to pay tribute to those players who have missed out on selection. It was an incredibly difficult process; all the players who missed selection are not only outstanding players but special people. We are close as a group which made this selection all the more difficult."
2011 All Blacks who missed out on selection include Hosea Gear, Sitiveni Sivivatu, Ben Smith, Liam Messam, Wyatt Crockett and Jarrad Hoeata.
However, Henry says they will be included in a pool of back-up players to cover any injuries during the tournament.
The Rugby World Cup 2011 kicks off with a spectacular opening ceremony on September 9 at Auckland’s Eden Park, and will be unveiled to a 60,000-strong crowd, and millions of viewers worldwide
The 20-minute opening ceremony will be followed by the tournament’s opening match between Rugby World Cup hosts New Zealand and Pacific rivals Tonga.
All Blacks Rugby World Cup 2011 squad
(province and test caps in brackets)
Corey Flynn, Canterbury (14)
Andrew Hore, Taranaki (54)
Keven Mealamu, Auckland (85)
John Afoa, Auckland (33)
Ben Franks, Tasman (11)
Owen Franks, Canterbury (23)
Tony Woodcock, North Harbour (75)
Anthony Boric, North Harbour (20)
Brad Thorn, Canterbury (51)
Samuel Whitelock, Canterbury (17)
Ali Williams, Auckland (65)
Jerome Kaino, Auckland (41)
Richie McCaw (capt), Canterbury (97)
Kieran Read, Canterbury (31)
Adam Thomson, Otago (21)
Victor Vito, Wellington (7)
Jimmy Cowan, Southland (47)
Andy Ellis, Canterbury (20)
Piri Weepu, Wellington (48)
Daniel Carter, Canterbury (82)
Colin Slade, Canterbury (5)
Richard Kahui, Waikato (12)
Ma’a Nonu, Wellington (58)
Conrad Smith, Wellington (48)
Sonny Bill Williams, Canterbury (7)
Israel Dagg, Hawke’s Bay (7)
Zac Guildford, Hawke’s Bay (6)
Cory Jane, Wellington (24)
Mils Muliaina, Waikato (97)
Isaia Toeava, Auckland (31)
Rugby World Cup
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