Rieko Ioane may not get an immediate chance to make amends for his blunder in the first Bledisloe Cup test, with his status in doubt for the clash against Australia at Eden Park tomorrow.
Ioane, who was dropped to the bench after losing the ball when diving to score a try in the 16-all draw with the Wallabies in Wellington last weekend, is in doubt with a hamstring injury.
Peter Umaga-Jensen has been called in as cover in case Ioane is not fit to play, with a decision to be made tomorrow.
Umaga-Jensen had trained with the All Blacks earlier in the week but was released to play for Wellington against North Harbour this afternoon. However, Ioane’s injury saw him removed from the squad late in the piece to fly up to Auckland and link back up with the All Blacks.
Anton Lienert-Brown and Jack Goodhue will start in the centres, while Umaga-Jensen could join reserve prop Alex Hodgman in making his first appearance in the black jersey if he is required to sit on the bench.
The news would be another blow for the All Blacks backline after George Bridge was ruled out earlier in the week following a training injury.
Bridge is out for up to six months after suffering a chest injury in training, while Sam Whitelock is also out of tomorrow’s match due to headaches.
Having made their debuts off the bench in Wellington, Caleb Clarke and Tupou Vaa’i moved into the starting lineup for the second test as their replacements.
Sign up to our mailing list for a weekly digest from the wide world of rugby.Sign Up Now