Dad-to-be Savea to miss All Blacks Bledisloe Test in Australia

·1-min read

Dynamic number eight Ardie Savea was on Monday left out of a 33-man All Blacks squad to travel to Australia for a Rugby Championship Test while he awaits the birth of his child.

Savea will miss the match in Melbourne on September 15, which doubles up as the first Bledisloe Cup Test, to be with his family.

The 28-year-old is expected to return for the second Bledisloe Test against Australia on September 24 at Auckland's Eden Park, New Zealand Rugby announced.

Savea scored one of the All Blacks' seven tries as they hammered Argentina 53-3 in Hamilton on Saturday.

The emphatic response to the shock defeat by the Pumas a week earlier put New Zealand top in a tight Rugby Championship race, just one point ahead of Australia, South Africa and Argentina.

Waikato Chiefs loose forward Luke Jacobson was brought in as cover for Savea and flanker Shannon Frizell, who suffered a rib injury against Argentina.

Centre Roger Tuivasa-Sheck and props Aidan Ross and Angus Ta'avao and were released.

New Zealand squad to play Australia on September 15 in Melbourne:

Forwards: Sam Cane (capt), Dane Coles, Samisoni Taukei'aho, Codie Taylor, George Bower, Ethan de Groot, Nepo Laulala, Tyrel Lomax, Fletcher Newell, Ofa Tu'ungafasi, Scott Barrett, Brodie Retallick, Tupou Vaa'i, Samuel Whitelock, Akira Ioane, Luke Jacobson, Dalton Papali'i, Hoskins Sotutu

Backs: Finlay Christie, Folau Fakatava, Aaron Smith, Beauden Barrett, Richie Mo'unga, Stephen Perofeta, Braydon Ennor, David Havili, Rieko Ioane, Quinn Tupaea, Jordie Barrett, Caleb Clarke, Leicester Fainga'anuku, Will Jordan, Sevu Reece

ryj/mmc/dh