After an enthralling draw in the series opener in Wellington last weekend, the Bledisloe Cup now heads to Auckland for a mouth-watering game two.
The four-game series now effectively becomes a three-match affair, with Australia now only needing to win two tests in order to reclaim the silverware they surrendered all the way back in 2003.
Rieko Ioane, who was dropped to bench midfield cover, has been ruled out of Sunday’s clash with a tweaked hamstring. Wellington midfielder Peter Umaga-Jensen has been named as his replacement and is poised for an international debut, should he take the field at Eden Park.
Where: Eden Park, Auckland
Referee: Angus Gardner (Australia)
NZ TAB odds (as of Sunday PM): All Blacks $1.13, Wallabies $5.65
Weather forecast (as of Sunday PM): Mainly fine apart from evening cloud. Northerlies developing in the afternoon. High of 20C, low of 15C.
All Blacks: Beauden Barrett, Jordie Barrett, Anton Lienert-Brown, Jack Goodhue, Caleb Clarke, Richie Mo’unga, Aaron Smith, Ardie Savea, Sam Cane (c), Shannon Frizell, Tupou Vaa’i, Patrick Tuipulotu, Ofa Tuungafasi, Dane Coles, Joe Moody. Reserves: Codie Taylor, Alex Hodgman, Nepo Laulala, Scott Barrett, Hoskins Sotutu, TJ Perenara, Peter Umaga-Jensen, Damian McKenzie.
Wallabies: Tom Banks, Filipo Daugunu, Hunter Paisami, Matt To’omua, Marika Koroibete, James O’Connor, Nic White, Harry Wilson, Michael Hooper (c), Ned Hanigan, Matt Philip, Lukhan Salakaia-Loto, Taniela Tupou, Brandon Paenga-Amosa, James Slipper. Reserves: Jordan Uelese, Scott Sio, Allan Alaalatoa, Rob Simmons, Liam Wright, Jake Gordon, Jordan Petaia, Reece Hodge.
The big storylines:
Foster under the gun: Can he mastermind Bledisloe redemption?
All Blacks wing Caleb Clarke: Chasing legends and hitting all the right notes
Henry wanted Rennie as ABs coach
Woe in Wellington, awesome in Auckland – the stats of ABs’ venues
Don’t expect history to repeat for All Blacks warns Patrick Tuipulotu
Change the name of game for Ian Foster: ‘We’re hurting and have got to respond’
Beauden Barrett opens up on fatherhood, Achilles issues and the drop-goal dilemma
Ned Hanigan comes in as Wallabies coach Dave Rennie says All Blacks are going to get ‘a lot better’
George Bridge ruled out of rugby for six months
Wallabies not concerned if Beauden Barrett plays at Eden Park
Frank Bunce calls for All Blacks to protect Richie Mo’unga from Wallabies hit men
Bledisloe burners: Should Rieko Ioane be dropped after embarrassing blunder?
Has John Plumtree made the right call to work with Ian Foster?
Claims of ‘safety fears’ for Wallabies if they win at Eden Park
‘We won’t get caught short again,’ vows All Black Anton Lienert-Brown
Rennie takes novel approach to help Wallabies team bonding
All Blacks irked by Wallabies’ tactics: ‘Off-ball incidents have to be dealt with’
‘Is the door slightly ajar?’: Calls increase for Beaudy to replace Richie at No 10
All Blacks hooker Dane Coles respects Dave Rennie’s ‘ruck chaos’, demands lift in intent
‘Lack of fear’ – how new-look Wallabies are overcoming All Black and Eden Park hoodoos
Wallabies coach Dave Rennie facing a welcome selection headache
Aaron Smith vows ‘I’ve got to be better’ after Bledisloe horror show
We can be better too, says Wallabies halfback Nic White
Rugby Australia pans NZ Rugby Super vision after Wallabies defy depth critics
Mark Reason: Now the All Blacks ARE playing tiddlywinks
Analytics has transformed sport – so why is rugby dragging the chain?
Wallabies love comes at perfect time for code
All Blacks accused of launching fake charm offensive on Wallabies
James O’Connor lauds Hunter Paisami’s path to Wallabies after career rebuild
Home forwards must pack more punch in Bledisloe II
David Campese warns: ‘The All Blacks aura is gone, Foster won’t last’
Selection quandaries for Ian Foster after messy Bledisloe I
Welcome home: All Blacks say judge us after Eden Park, their 43-test fortress
Aversion to kicking a drop goal to win the Bledisloe Cup test ‘baffling’
Prediction: The Wallabies were choosing their words carefully post-match in Wellington, about being disappointed they couldn’t close out a victory, but behind closed doors you can bet they are a side full of confidence and pride after running the All Blacks that close. Facing them now is an All Blacks side who will be desperate to respond, and who are back at their fortress, where they haven’t lost for 43 tests, and where the Wallabies haven’t rolled them since 1986. If the weather plays ball, expect conditions to not be so much of a leveller this time out. New Zealand still showed how utterly lethal they can be in punishing opponents for the smallest of errors, but the hosts’ forward pack are going to have to bring a step up in physicality against the Dave Rennie-inspired Aussies. All Blacks by 10.
How to follow: Stuff’s live blog will kick off at 3.30pm.