Papalii makes All Black squad

Dalton Papalii has earned the Back jersey after an impressive Investec Super Rugby season followed by a strong Mitre 10 Cup season.

Pakuranga United Rugby Club’s Dalton Papalii, 21, has today been named in the All Blacks.

Papalii, who also starred in the Saint Kentigern College 1st XV and made the NZ U20s in 2016, has been named in the All Blacks’ 32-man squad for the 2018 Vista Northern Tour, which kicks off in Japan on November 3.

Papalii gets his opportunity after an impressive Investec Super Rugby season followed by a strong Mitre 10 Cup season. He comes in following injuries to Sam Cane (neck surgery) and the unavailability of Shannon Frizell and Tasman loose forward contender Jordan Taufua.

In addition to the 32-man squad, the All Blacks selectors have also named a wider squad of 19 players who will assemble in Japan following the Bledisloe Cup Test to prepare for the Test against Japan.

Pakuranga United Rugby Club were pleased with a Papali’i’s selection.

“The club congratulates its newest All Black squad member, loose forward Dalton Papalii who has today gained selection in the 32 man touring squad to Japan and Europe,” said Club President Michael Biddick.

“Dalton becomes our first All Black squad member to play for both the junior and senior playing ranks of our club, he also played for the local St Kent’s 1st XV whilst at college.
“We are extremely proud of what Dalton is achieving in his rugby with his elevation to the Black jersey reward for his outstanding play.”

  • The All Blacks selectors, Steve Hansen, Ian Foster and Grant Fox, have selected their squad for the Vista 2018 All Blacks Northern Tour to Japan and Europe for Tests against Australia, Japan, England, Ireland and Italy.

The 32-man squad is as follows:

Forwards:

Hookers

  • Dane Coles (31, Wellington, 56)
  • Nathan Harris (26, Bay of Plenty, 18)
  • Codie Taylor (27, Canterbury, 38)

Props

  • Owen Franks (30, Canterbury, 103)
  • Nepo Laulala (27, Counties Manukau, 13)
  • Joe Moody (30, Canterbury, 36)
  • Karl Tu’inukuafe (25, North Harbour, 9)
  • Ofa Tuungafasi (26, Auckland, 22)

Locks

  • Scott Barrett (23, Taranaki, 14)
  • Brodie Retallick (27, Hawke’s Bay, 71)
  • Patrick Tuipulotu (25, Auckland, 19)
  • Samuel Whitelock (30, Canterbury, 105)

Loose Forwards

  • Vaea Fifita (26, Wellington, 7)
  • Dalton Papalii (21, Auckland, uncapped)
  • Kieran Read, captain (32, Counties Manukau, 114)
  • Ardie Savea (25, Wellington, 31)
  • Liam Squire (27, Tasman, 20)
  • Matt Todd (30, Canterbury, 14)

Backs:

Halfbacks

  • TJ Perenara (26, Wellington, 51)
  • Aaron Smith (28, Manawatu, 79)
  • Te Toiroa Tahuriorangi (23, Taranaki, 1)

First five–eighths

  • Beauden Barrett (27, Taranaki, 69)
  • Damian McKenzie (23, Waikato, 19)
  • Richie Mo’unga (24, Canterbury, 4)

Midfielders

  • Ryan Crotty (30, Canterbury, 41)
  • Jack Goodhue (23, Northland, 5)
  • Anton Lienert-Brown (23, Waikato, 30)
  • Sonny Bill Williams (33, Counties Manukau, 49)

Outside backs

  • Jordie Barrett (21, Taranaki, 7)
  • Rieko Ioane (21, Auckland, 20)
  • Waisake Naholo (27, Taranaki, 24)
  • Ben Smith (32, Otago, 73)

In addition to the 32-man squad, the All Blacks selectors have also named a wider squad of 19 players, who will assemble in Japan following the Bledisloe Cup Test to prepare for the Test against Japan.

Those players are as follows (with age, province and Test caps in bracket):

Forwards:

Hookers

  • Asafo Aumua (20, Wellington, uncapped, two non-Tests)
  • Liam Coltman (28, Otago, 3)

Props

  • Tyrel Lomax (22, Tasman, uncapped)
  • Reuben O’Neill (23, Taranaki, uncapped)
  • Tim Perry (29, Tasman, 5)
  • Angus Ta’avao (28, Taranaki, 1)

Locks

  • Luke Romano (32, Canterbury, 31)

Loose Forwards

  • Jackson Hemopo (24, Manawatu, 2)
  • Gareth Evans (27, Hawke’s Bay, uncapped)
  • Dillon Hunt (23, North Harbour, uncapped, one non-Test)
  • Luke Whitelock (27, Canterbury, 6)

Backs:

Halfbacks

  • Mitchell Drummond (24, Canterbury, uncapped, one non-Test)
  • Bryn Hall (26, North Harbour, uncapped)

First five–eighths

  • Brett Cameron (21, Canterbury, uncapped)

Midfielders

  • Ngani Laumape (25, Manawatu, 8)
  • Matt Proctor (25, Wellington, uncapped)

Outside backs

  • George Bridge (23, Canterbury, uncapped)
  • David Havili (23, Tasman, 3)
  • Nehe Milner-Skudder (27, Manawatu, 12)

All Blacks Head Coach Steve Hansen said: “This is a hugely exciting Vista Northern Tour we’re about to embark on and one which we’re all looking forward to.”