All-blacks lose Waisake Naholo to a broken leg while Dan Carter and Sonny Bill Williams are also omitteda
All-blacks lose Waisake Naholo to a broken leg while Dan Carter and Sonny Bill Williams are also omitted
New Zealand’s Waisake Naholo will miss the forthcoming World Cup after breaking his leg in his test debut against Argentina.
The winger had made a solid start to his test career, but limped off with what turned out to be a cracked his fibula during the All Blacks 39-18 Rugby Championship victory over Los Pumas in Christchurch on Friday.
Naholo, who scored 13 tries for the Dunedin-based Highlanders during the Super Rugby season, was suspected to just have a sprained ankle before further scans revealed the extent of the injury.
All Blacks coach Steve Hansen revealed the bad news after the wing was not named in the squad travelling to South Africa for the All Blacks’ next Rugby Championship match.
“We are all a bit shocked about it because he was weight-bearing on it and pretty good,” Hansen said.
“But he got back here last night and got really sore, so the doctor thought he better have it scanned. And in the scan there is a very fine crack in it [the bone]. It just means three months out.”
Centre Sonny Bill Williams will also not be on the plane as despite his fantastic performance against Los Pumas Hansen is keen not to overuse him, meaning Ma’a Nonu will likely be reunited with Conrad Smith in the centre at Ellis Park.
Another player missing from Hansen’s squad is fly-half Dan Carter, whose fitness is being managed closely by the All-Black staff to ensure he is at 100 per cent for the World Cup.
Carter, who is now 33, started against Argentina and scored 13 points but with him out of the picture it will be between Beauden Barrett, Colin Slade and Lima Sopoaga ti battle it out for the no.10 jersey.
New Zealand squad:
Forwards: Dane Coles, Keven Mealamu, Codie Taylor, Wyatt Crockett, Ben Franks, Owen Franks, Nepo Laulala, Tony Woodcock, James Broadhurst, Brodie Retallick, Luke Romano, Samuel Whitelock, Jerome Kaino, Richie McCaw, Liam Messam, Kieran Read, Victor Vito.
Backs: Andy Ellis, TJ Perenara, Aaron Smith, Beauden Barrett, Colin Slade, Lima Sopoaga, Ryan Crotty, Malakai Fekitoa, Ma’a Nonu, Conrad Smith, Israel Dagg, Charles Piutau, Julian Savea, Ben Smith.