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Mark Telea joins All Blacks, still no replacements named for XV

By Ned Lester
Mark Telea scores for North Harbour. Photo by Dave Rowland/Getty Images

Mark Telea has been called into the All Blacks as cover for Leicester Fai’anganuku, who travelled home from Japan this week for family reasons.

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Telea landed in Tokyo Tuesday morning, the team reported on social media.

The 25-year-old Auckland player has been in rich form throughout this year’s Super Rugby and NPC seasons, earning his second call-up to the All Blacks squad after a short stint with the team during the Ireland series earlier in the year, when he covered for Will Jordan who was out with Covid at the time.

Telea’s absence from the All Blacks XV adds to the already significant number of players unavailable through All Blacks cover call-ups and injuries within the second-string squad.

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XV players Damian McKenzie, Patrick Tuipulotu, Asafo Aumua and Bard Weber are already with the All Blacks in Tokyo and while it is assumed they will rejoin the XV team for their own Northern Tour games, no plans have been confirmed.

No replacements have been announced for the XV side who will face Ireland A next weekend in Dublin.

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