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All Blacks all in

The All Blacks perform the Haka before the Round 4 Rugby Championship match between the Argentina Pumas and the New Zealand All Blacks at Suncorp Stadium in Brisbane, Australia, 18 September 2021. Picture: EPA, Darren England

The fact that we have the chance to achieve a potential Grand Slam against our southern hemisphere opponents is pretty special – Ian Foster, All Blacks coach.

NEW ZEALAND want to rub salt into South Africa’s wounds by winning the Grand Slam when the two teams meet at the Robina Stadium in Queensland tomorrow at 12.05pm.

Eyeing a clean sweep in the Rugby Championship, the All Blacks already wrapped up the title when they beat the Springboks 19-17 last weekend.

And heading into the sixth and final round tomorrow, coach Ian Foster tells the New Zealand Rugby website: “The energy levels are high in the team, it’s our fifth Test in a row, and we’re highly motivated ahead of another big Test against South Africa and the last Test of the Championship.

“We’ve achieved the Championship title, which we’re really proud to have achieved. The fact that we now have the chance to achieve a potential Grand Slam against our southern hemisphere opponents is pretty special. I’m excited by that and it has already given this weekend’s Test an edge.”

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While the Springboks made two front row changes to their team, the All Blacks brought in Brad Weber at scrumhalf, Anton Lienert-Brown in the midfield and Sevu Reece on the wing.

Flyhalf Richie Mo’Unga also returns from paternal leave to play off the bench. The match kicks off at 12.05pm SA time tomorrow.

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Australia and Argentina kick off the final round tomorrow at 9.05am, with the Pumas’ Sebastian Cancelliere, Joaquin Diaz Bonilla, Felipe Ezcurra, Pablo Matera, Santiago Medrano and Santiago Socino were all banned for the clash after breaking Covid-19 protocols by taking an unauthorised trip to a health retreat.

Springboks vs All Blacks squads

Springboks: 15 Willie le Roux, 14 Sbu Nkosi, 13 Lukhanyo Am, 12 Damian de Allende, 11 Makazole Mapimpi, 10 Handre Pollard, 9 Faf de Klerk, 8 Duane Vermeulen, 7 Kwagga Smith, 6 Siya Kolisi (captain), 5 Lood de Jager, 4 Eben Etzebeth, 3 Trevor Nyakane, 2 Bongi Mbonambi, 1 Ox Nche. Replacements: 16 Malcolm Marx, 17 Steven Kitshoff, 18 Vincent Koch, 19 Franco Mostert, 20 Jasper Wiese, 21 Herschel Jantjies, 22 Elton Jantjies, 23 Frans Steyn.

All Blacks: 15 Jordie Barrett, 14 Sevu Reece, 13 Anton Lienert-Brown, 12 David Havili, 11 Rieko Ioane, 10 Beauden Barrett, 9 Brad Weber, 8 Luke Jacobson, 7 Ardie Savea (captain), 6 Akira Ioane, 5 Scott Barrett, 4 Brodie Retallick, 3 Nepo Laulala, 2 Codie Taylor, 1 Joe Moody. Replacements: 16 Asafo Aumua, 17 George Bower, 18 Ofa Tu’ungafasi, 19 Patrick Tuipulotu, 20 Ethan Blackadder, 21 TJ Perenara, 22 Richie Mo’unga, 23 Damian McKenzie.

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