All Blacks to wear special Meads tribute

THE All Blacks will draw inspiration from rugby colossus Colin Meads as they search for a complete performance in the second Bledisloe Cup Test in Dunedin on Saturday.

Coach Michael Cheika denied Kerevi's axing was due to defensive issues but the Queensland powerhouse was clearly targeted by the All Blacks in Sydney and did not cope well with the extra attention.

Incredibly, it is the 12th change of Australia's second-row combination since the start of 2016.

Incidentally it was in the same city that the Wallabies last beat the All Blacks in New Zealand, in 2001 at the former Carisbrook Stadium.

They will share the mark with Ian Jones and Robin Brooke.

Local media see the second Bledisloe Cup Test at Dunedin's Forsyth Barr Stadium as a foregone conclusion.

The All Blacks ran in a record score against the Wallabies in Sydney, but New Zealand skipper Kieran Read says they need to be more ruthless if they want to clinch the Bledisloe. "Not just looking to get the ball back, but getting into it".

Such is the All Blacks' confidence going into tomorrow's Rugby Championship rematch against Australia that they have shrugged off the loss of veteran prop Owen Franks by calmly slotting in a raw replacement, Nepo Laulala.

Indeed the wounded Wallabies have perhaps never been more cornered.

There was overseas interest once the Reds told him his services weren't required going forward but Simmons was close to confirming he'd be Waratahs-bound to help offset the departures of Will Skelton and Dean Mumm. "We've got to expect it", Read said.

"That's the plan (to stay in Australia) and that was always the reason for wanting to stay around".

Meads, who honed his strength on the farm in King Country, is a revered figure in New Zealand and widely regarded as one of the greatest rugby players ever.

New Zealand coach Steve Hansen has tried hard to talk up Australia as a "very risky beast" going into the second round Rugby Championship match in Dunedin.

His elevation to the starting side means Codie Taylor has been pushed the bench.

Simmons will call the lineouts in Coleman's absence.

Coles has only played just 90 minutes for the Hurricanes since mid March.

"He's got good back-field work and now that he's back and fit I think it was an easy selection".

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