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Sotutu Earns Run-On Debut: Foster

Sotutu joins legends like Wayne Shelford, Murray Mexted and Zinzan Brook who excelled for the All Blacks at No.8.
30 Oct 2020 13:08
Sotutu Earns Run-On Debut: Foster
All Blacks forwards, Hoskins Sotutu, will replace Ardie Savea at No.8 in Bledisloe Cup III. Photo: NZ Rugby

Hoskins Sotutu will replace Ardie Savea at No.8 in Bledisloe Cup III and first Investec Tri Nations Test at ANZ Stadium, Sydney, on Saturday at 8.50pm (Fiji).

The Tavea, Bua native becomes the first Fijian to play in that position as he makes his first start in his third test for the All Blacks.

Sotutu joins legends like Wayne Shelford, Murray Mexted and Zinzan Brook who excelled for the All Blacks at No.8.

All Blacks Coach Ian Foster applauded Sotutu progress so far.

“He’s had plenty of minutes already in the Bledisloe Cup series and he’s ready to go. He’s excited. It’s a chance to start his first Test so it’s pretty special for him,”Foster told allblacks.com.

Sotutu is one of three changes to the starting forward pack. Karl Tu’inukuafe comes in at loose-head prop for Joe Moody, who is still going through HIA (head injury assessment) protocols, while Samuel Whitelock returns at starting lock. Tyrel Lomax comes onto the bench for Nepo Laulala. In the backs, Laumape is in the 22 jersey, while Rieko Ioane is in the 23 jersey.

Foster said this week’s approach was simple.

“It’s the third Test of a four Test series and the Bledisloe Cup is on the line. It’s a real chance for us to come into their home patch, a place which they take a lot of pride in playing and for a trophy which means a lot to them, and we need to show them how much it means to us.”

Match-day 23: (Test caps in brackets): 1. Karl Tu’inukuafe (14), 2. Dane Coles (71), 3. Ofa Tuungafasi (37), 4.Patrick Tuipulotu (32), 5.Samuel Whitelock (118), 6. Shannon Frizell (11), 7. Sam Cane (70) – captain, 8.Hoskins Sotutu (2), 9. Aaron Smith (94), 10. Richie Mo’unga (19), 11. Caleb Clarke (2), 12. Jack Goodhue (15), 13. Anton Lienert-Brown (45), 14.Jordie Barrett (19), 15. Beauden Barrett (85).

Reserves: 16. Codie Taylor (52), 17. Alex Hodgman (1), 18. Tyrel Lomax (2), 19. Scott Barrett (37), 20. Dalton Papalii (3)21. TJ Perenara (66), 22. Ngani Laumape (13) 23. Rieko Ioane (31).

Feedback: oseab@fijisun.com.fj



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