Dixon to debut for All Blacks

Flank Elliot Dixon will make his Test debut as one of five changes to the All Blacks' starting lineup for Saturday's match against Wales in Dunedin.

The 26-year-old Dixon, who plays for the Highlanders in Super Rugby, joins the team to earn his first cap in place of veteran Jerome Kaino at blindside flank. In the front row, Charlie Faumuina replaces Owen Franks at tighthead prop.

Changes to the backline see Beauden Barrett earn a rare start at flyhalf ahead of Aaron Cruden, who is still nursing a head knock sustained in the second Test. Malakai Fekitoa has also been ruled out through injury and is replaced by George Moala. Julian Savea is back in the No 11 jersey with Waisake Naholo moving to the bench.

Prop Ofa Tu’ungafasi and loose forward Liam Squire will be on the bench, and could make their international debuts is they take to the field.

Other bench inclusions are flyhalf Lima Sopoaga, scrumhalf Tawera Kerr-Barlow, hooker Codie Taylor and lock Luke Romano.

All Blacks – 15 Israel Dagg, 14 Ben Smith, 13 George Moala, 12 Ryan Crotty, 11 Julian Savea, 10 Beauden Barrett, 9 Aaron Smith, 8 Kieran Read, 7 Sam Cane, 6 Elliot Dixon, 5 Sam Whitelock, 4 Brodie Retallick, 3 Charlie Faumuina, 2 Dane Coles, 1 Joe Moody.
Subs: 16 Codie Taylor, 17 Wyatt Crockett, 18 Ofa Tu'ungafasi, 19 Luke Romano, 20 Liam Squire, 21 Tawera Kerr-Barlow, 22 Lima Sopoaga, 23 Waisake Naholo.

Photo: Phil Walter/Getty Images

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Mariette Adams