2 Dec 2020

Changing of the guard for Māori All Blacks

5:11 pm on 2 December 2020

A changing of the guard is on the way for the Māori All Blacks with eight debutants named in the side to play Moana Pasifika in Hamilton on Saturday night.

Lock Manaaki Selby-Rickit, midfielders Quinn Tupaea and Billy Proctor along with fullback Kaleb Trask are the newcomers named in the starting fifteen while hooker Kurt Eklund, prop Tamaiti Williams, loose forward Ethan Roots and halfback Rameka Poihipi are set to make their debuts off the bench.

There are still a few veterans around though with hooker Ash Dixon to captain the side, Liam Messam at number eight and prop Josh Hohneck who last played for the side in 2015 all included.

Liam Messam.
Maori All Blacks v British and Irish Lions. 2017.

Liam Messam. Photo: PHOTOSPORT

"We've had some real stalwarts that have moved overseas or are unavailable for this particular campaign and that opens up the door for some of those young guys to come in and show us what they've got and experience what it's like to be in our environment," said head coach Clayton McMillan.

"We felt the likes of Liam and Josh, guys that have been in the jersey historically, gone away and plied their trade overseas, have come back and added real value to their Mitre 10 Cup teams.

"It's a no brainer for us, they are still good enough, but the peripheral stuff they bring, the mana and the knowledge and their ability to set really high standards for young people to follow has been instrumental in pulling these guys together."

Ko ngā kaitākaro 23 o te rā (Rohe, Karapu Super Ruby, Iwi e noho taiapa ana, Torekaihuruhuru e mumura ana):

1: Josh Hohneck (Otago/Ngāti Manuhiri/Ngāti Whātua)

2: Ash Dixon - Kāpene (Hawke's Bay/Highlanders/Ngāti Tahinga)

3: Marcel Renata (Auckland/Blues/Ngāti Whanaunga/Ngāi Takoto)

4: Isaia Walker-Leawere (Hawke's Bay/Hurricanes/Ngāti Porou)

5: Manaaki Selby-Rickit (Southland/Highlanders/Ngāti Raukawa /Ngāti Tūwharetoa)

6: Whetukamokamo Douglas (Canterbury/Crusaders/Ngāti Porou/Ngāti Whakaue)

7: Billy Harmon (Canterbury/Crusaders/Ngāi Tahu)

8: Liam Messam (Waikato/Ngāi Tuhoe)

9: Bryn Hall (North Harbour/Crusaders/Ngāti Ranginui)

10: Otere Black (Bay of Plenty/Blues/Ngāi Tūhoe/Te Whānau a Apanui/Ngāti Tūwharetoa)

11: Sean Wainui (Taranaki/Chiefs/ Ngāi Tūhoe/Ngā Ariki Kaipūtahi/Ngāti Porou)

12: Quinn Tupaea (Waikato/Chiefs/Waikato)

13: Billy Proctor (Wellington/Hurricanes/ Ngāi Te Rangi/Ngāpuhi)

14: Shaun Stevenson (North Harbour/Chiefs/Ngāpuhi)

15: Kaleb Trask (Bay of Plenty/Chiefs/Ngāpuhi)

Ngā Kairīwhi:

16: Kurt Eklund (Bay of Plenty/Blues/Ngāti Kahu)

17: Pouri Rakete-Stones (Hawke's Bay/Hurricanes/Ngāpuhi)

18: Tamaiti Williams (Canterbury/Ngāpuhi)

19: Ethan Roots (North Harbour/Crusaders/Ngāti Kahungunu)

20: Mitchell Karpik (Bay of Plenty/Chiefs/Rongomaiwahine/Ngāti Kahungunu)

21: Te Toiroa Tahuriorangi (Bay of Plenty/Chiefs/Ngāti Pikiao)

22: Rameka Poihipi (Canterbury/Ngāti Whakaue)

23: Jonah Lowe (Hawke's Bay/Hurricanes/Ngāti Pikiao)