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Thorne back in All Black’s squad for Tri Nations

Former All Blacks captain Reuben Thorne has been recalled to their 30-man squad for the Tri-Nations which starts against Australia on the 8th of July.

Thorne who was captain of the All Blacks for the 2003 Rugby World Cup, turned down an offer to captain the Junior All Blacks and missed recent Tests with Ireland and Argentina

Troy Flavell and Jerome Kaino who both appeared against Ireland have been dropped which is a little odd as Troy Flavell scored a decisive try against Ireland.

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“We have looked at other candidates, none of whom have matched Reuben’s form in Super 14,” said coach Graham Henry.

“Hopefully, there is a glimpse of the future in those selections but, for now, Reuben’s form is the benchmark. He is a proven performer.”

The All Blacks are not finding it easy to replace ex captain Tana Umaga and then the injury to Conrad Smith. Ma’a Nonu, Isaia Toeava & Mils Muliaina are the top candidates for the position.

“The competition is strong at many positions which is good for the All Blacks and good for New Zealand rugby,” Henry added.

New Zealand squad:

Backs: Leon MacDonald, Mils Muliaina, Rico Gear, Doug Howlett, Joe Rokocoko, Scott Hamilton, Ma’a Nonu, Isaia Toeava, Aaron Mauger, Daniel Carter, Luke McAlister, Piri Weepu, Byron Kelleher, Jimmy Cowan.

Forwards: Anton Oliver, Keven Mealamu, Andrew Hore, Carl Hayman, Greg Somerville, Neemia Tialata, Tony Woodcock, Chris Jack, Ali Williams, Jason Eaton, Greg Rawlinson, Jerry Collins, Reuben Thorne, Richie McCaw (captain), Chris Masoe, Rodney So’oialo.

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