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Rugby World Cup: New Zealand team profile

Again established as the pre-tournament favourites, New Zealand are no strangers to the weight of expectation as they get set for the World Cup in France.

Confirmed Squad


Dane Coles (Hurricanes), Samisoni Taukei'aho (Chiefs), Codie Taylor (Crusaders), Ethan de Groot (Highlanders), Tyrel Lomax (Hurricanes), Nepo Laulala (Blues), Fletcher Newell (Crusaders), Ofa Tu'ungafasi (Blues), Tamaiti Williams (Crusaders), Scott Barrett (Crusaders), Brodie Retallick (Chiefs), Tupou Vaa'i (Chiefs), Sam Whitelock (Crusaders), Sam Cane (c) (Chiefs), Shannon Frizell (Highlanders), Luke Jacobson (Chiefs), Dalton Papali'i (Blues), Ardie Savea (Hurricanes).


Finlay Christie (Blues), Cam Roigard (Hurricanes), Aaron Smith (Highlanders), Beauden Barrett (Blues), Damian McKenzie (Chiefs), Richie Mo'unga (Crusaders), Jordie Barrett (Hurricanes), David Havili (Crusaders), Rieko Ioane (Blues), Anton Lienert-Brown (Chiefs), Caleb Clarke (Blues), Leicester Fainga'anuku (Crusaders), Will Jordan (Crusaders), Emoni Narawa (Chiefs), Mark Telea (Blues).


Ian Foster knows what it's all about when it comes to the All Blacks, having been with the management team since 2012. 

Previously working as the understudy to Steve Hansen, Foster took the reins back in 2020. It has not been the smoothest transition from World Cup-winning coach Hansen, and at one stage it looked like Foster's time was up. 

A first home series defeat to Ireland and maiden home loss to Argentina had many calling for Foster to go. However, the 58-year-old managed to ride out the storm and helped the All Blacks win the 2023 Rugby Championship and continue their domination of the Bledisloe Cup. 

After already confirming he will step away after the World Cup, with Scott Robertson taking over, winning the All Blacks' fourth Webb Ellis Cup would be the perfect way to repay New Zealand Rugby's previous faith in him.

Possible First XV

15. Beauden Barrett 
14. Will Jordan 
13. Rieko Ioane 
12. Jordie Barrett 
11. Mark Telea 
10. Richie Mo'unga 
9. Aaron Smith 
8. Ardie Savea 
7. Sam Cane 
6. Shannon Frizell 
5. Scott Barrett 
4. Brodie Retallick 
3. Tyrel Lomax 
2. Codie Taylor 
1. Ethan de Groot


Where to begin? Foster looks capable of putting out two different XVs that would both be considered serious challengers for the Webb Ellis Cup. 

A team with pace and power throughout, the All Blacks always appear to have extra time on their hands in attack. 

Doing the basics well, while having a flair for the remarkable, New Zealand are often referred to as the Brazil of rugby union. 

They will take some stopping at this World Cup.


New Zealand have shown in recent years that they can be got at, with Ireland and Argentina both enjoying success in the Land of the Long White Cloud. 

An opposition side will have to be accurate at the set-piece and the breakdown to stand a chance of getting at the All Blacks. 

New Zealand have fluffed their lines at World Cups in the past and the pressure will again be on them to deliver.

Key Players

Will Jordan 

Crusaders winger Will Jordan has emerged as a real standout in an already star-studded New Zealand squad. 

With an impressive 23 tries in 24 appearances for his country, Jordan will certainly be a contender for top tryscorer at this World Cup. 

Aaron Smith 

The man who makes New Zealand tick, scrum-half Aaron Smith will again be a key figure for the All Blacks in France. 

A half-back with a wealth of experience who can be spoken in the same breath as France superstar Antoine Dupont, expect big things from Smith in this tournament. 

Ardie Savea 

A player who seems to have been in the All Blacks set-up for an age but is still just 29, Ardie Savea is a firecracker of a back-row player. 

A tremendous ball carrier and formidable at the breakdown, there is so much to like about how Savea plays the game. 

Ones to watch 

Mark Telea

A player who took some time to burst onto the international stage, 26-year-old Mark Telea only made his New Zealand debut last year. 

The winger has certainly been looking to make up for lost time and has scored three tries in his first four appearances for his country. Telea is another contender for the tournament's top tryscorer. 

Beauden Barrett

It would also be impossible not to mention Beauden Barrett when it comes to players to watch. 

Already an All Black great, the utility back currently finds himself plying his trade at full-back. A player capable of magic on the field, Barrett will be looking to shine in what could be his last World Cup.


All odds correct at time of publishing and subject to change.

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