All Blacks vs Namibia: All you need to know for Rugby World Cup pool match in Toulouse - Sky
The All Blacks are preparing to bounce back from their first pool defeat in Rugby World Cup history.
Ian Foster’s side lost 27-13 to France in the tournament’s first match in Paris last Saturday (NZ time).
They will almost certainly return to winning ways against Namibia in Toulouse on Saturday (NZ time), which you can watch delayed on Stuff from 8:30am.
The African minnows have never won at the World Cup and went down 52-8 to Italy in Pool A’s other opening match.
Here’s all you need to know as the All Blacks play their second pool match in France against Namibia.
All Blacks v Namibia
When: Saturday, 7am; Where: Stadium de Toulouse, Toulouse; Coverage: Live on Sky Sport 1, delayed on Stuff from 8:30am, live updates on Stuff from 6:30am.
The All Blacks and Namibia have clashed at the last two World Cups in their only two meetings in test rugby.
In 2015, when Steve Hansen’s team would lift the Webb Ellis Cup in England, Namibia got one of the loudest cheers of the pool stage when they managed to score a try against the All Blacks in London. Namibia’s captain in France, Johan Deysel, was the man who touched down.
The All Blacks still won comfortably, 58-13, and were also dominant in Japan in 2019.
Jordie Barrett played out of position at first five-eighth when the All Blacks won 71-9 in Tokyo. TJ Perenara scored a magnificent try that was named World Rugby’s best of the year.
For their Toulouse fixture, the All Blacks are likely to make a host of changes ahead of their decisive pool match against Italy in Lyon on September 30. They play Uruguay to finish the pool stage the following week.
All Blacks forwards coach Jason Ryan has indicated that players with injury concerns, such as Sam Cane, Shannon Frizell, Tyrel Lomax and Jordie Barrett, will not feature against the Namibians, who are led by former South Africa coach Allister Coetzee.
Squad members who didn’t play against France could be handed World Cup debuts, including prop Tamaiti Williams, halfback Cam Roigard, playmaker Damian McKenzie and wing Caleb Clarke.
Namibia’s best chance of a first World Cup win at their seventh tournament will come against Uruguay in their final pool match in Lyon on September 28.
The teams will be named on Thursday morning (NZ time).
All Blacks: TBC
Referee: Luke Pearce (England)
Assistant referees: Andrew Brace (Ireland), Jordan Way (Australia)
Television match official: Brian MacNeice (Ireland)
TAB odds: All Blacks N/A, Namibia $81
History: Played 2, All Blacks 2 wins