Hansen makes one change

All Blacks coach Steve Hansen is expecting Ireland to improve on their first Test defeat and has made one change to his side for the game in Christchurch this weekend. [more]

Steve Hansen

All Blacks coach Steve Hansen is expecting Ireland to improve on their first Test defeat and has made one change to his side for the game in Christchurch this weekend.

Adam Thomson comes into the back row to replace the injured Victor Vito. Thomson scored a try in last weekend's 42-10 win over the Irish after coming on as a replacement and his seat on the bench goes to the uncapped Sam Cane.

The game will mark the return of internatonal rugby to Christchurch following the massive earthquake that did so much damage to the southern island city before last year's World Cup. Almost 200 people were killed in the disaster and the last time the All Blacks played there was in 2010.

“It's great that Test footy has returned to Christchurch and the players are looking forward to playing in front of a sell-out crowd. We expect Ireland to improve as they have a 'never-say-die' attitude, so what we did last time won't be good enough," said Hansen.

"We want a performance we can all be proud of on Saturday. As coaches, we are expecting further improvements in our game due to the extra training and preparation time we have had together, along with having a game under our belt.

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"The team, especially those of us from Christchurch, know that people have still been doing it tough so hopefully we can give them a performance on Saturday that puts a smile on their faces."

New Zealand: I Dagg; Z Guildford, C Smith, S. Williams, J Savea; D Carter, A. Smith,; T Woodcock, A Hore, O Franks, B Retallick, S Whitelock, A Thomson, R McCaw (captain), K Read.

Replacements: H Elliot, B Franks, A Williams, S Cane, P Weepu, A Cruden, B Smith.

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