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Māori All Blacks Squad named for two-match series against Fiji

Māori All Blacks Squad named for two-match series against Fiji

The Māori All Blacks Squad to face Fiji in a home and away Series this month has been named.

(Feature picture is the 1922 NZ Māori Team)

The squad is (with Iwi, Province, Super Rugby Club. New caps in bold):

Forwards

Hookers
Ash Dixon Ngāti Tahinga Hawke’s Bay / Highlanders
Nathan Harris Ngāti Apakura /Tainui Bay of Plenty/ Chiefs
Props
Tyrel Lomax Ngāi Tuhoe/Muaupoko Tasman / Highlanders
Ben May Ngāti Maniapoto Hawke’s Bay / Hurricanes
Marcel Renata Ngāti Whānaunga/Ngāi Takoto Auckland/ Blues
Ross Wright Ngāti Whatua/Ngāti Porou Northland / Blues
Locks
Tom Franklin Ngāti Maniapoto Bay of Plenty/ Highlanders
Pari Pari Parkinson Te Whānau ā Apanui Tasman / Highlanders
Isaia Walker-Leawere Ngāti Porou Hawke’s Bay / Hurricanes
Loose Forwards
Whetukamokamo Douglas Ngāti Porou/Ngati Whakaue Canterbury / Crusaders
Elliot Dixon Ngāpuhi Southland / Highlanders
Akira Ioane Ngāpuhi/Te Whānau ā Apanui Auckland / Blues
Mitchell Karpik Rongomaiwahine/Ngāti Kahungunu Bay of Plenty / Chiefs
Reed Prinsep Te Rārawa Canterbury / Hurricanes

Backs

Halfbacks
Bryn Hall Ngāti Ranginui North Harbour / Crusaders
Jonathan Ruru Ngāti Kahungunu/Rongomaiwāhine Auckland / Blues
Te Toiroa Tahuriorangi Ngāti Pikiao Taranaki / Chiefs
First five-eighths
Otere Black Ngāi Tuhoe/Te Whānau ā Apanui/Ngāti Tūwharetoa Manawatu / Blues
Jackson Garden-Bachop Ngāti Awa Wellington / Hurricanes
Fletcher Smith Ngāti Kahungunu Waikato / Hurricanes
Midfielders
Alex Nankivell      Ngāpuhi Tasman / Chiefs
Rob Thompson Ngāti Kahungunu / Ngā Rauru Manawatu / Highlanders
Teihorangi Walden Te Atiawa Taranaki / Highlanders
Outside backs
Jordan Hyland Ngāi Tahu Northland / Highlanders
Shaun Stevenson Ngāpuhi North Harbour / Chiefs
Sean Wainui Ngāi Tuhoe/Ngāti Porou Taranaki / Chiefs

Māori All Blacks Head Coach Clayton McMillan said the squad named was an exciting mix of vast experience and new energy.

“This is a really exciting squad to name. I think we have a good balance between the experience of guys who know how to perform at this level, and those who bring an important fresh perspective and energy. We also have some returning after an absence and they will bring some important knowledge into our group.

“We have named 26 players today, with one more, likely to be a prop, to be added before we travel next week.

“We’re excited to name four new caps in Nathan Harris, Alex Nankivell, Fletcher Smith and Jordan Hyland.

“With six players (Harris, Lomax, Dixon, Ioane, Hall and Tahuriorangi) in our mix with All Blacks experience, we can take a very solid squad to Suva and then on to Rotorua.

“Pulling on the Māori All Blacks jersey is a wonderful opportunity, and I know that these players will want to represent their heritage, their whanau and their country well. These next two fixtures will allow players to showcase what they have, and really put their best foot forward for higher honours.

“We’re looking forward to playing Fiji in Suva and then again in Rotorua. They’re a fantastic and exciting opposition who play a similar game to the Maori All Blacks. We know they’ll be looking to use this Series as preparation for their Rugby World Cup campaign.

“For some time we’ve been coveting a strong international opposition, and Fiji certainly fits that bill. We’re looking forward to the challenge of playing Fiji in back to back fixtures.

“I’m very excited about coaching a Māori team that is playing in Rotorua – what we consider to be the sentimental home of the Māori All Blacks.”

Māori All Blacks Schedule

V Fiji
Saturday 13 July 2019
ANZ Stadium, Suva

V Fiji
Saturday 20 July 2019
Rotorua International Stadium

(Feature picture is the 1922 NZ Māori Team)

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