Bundee Aki starts as Ireland team named for Third Test against New Zealand 4 months ago

Bundee Aki starts as Ireland team named for Third Test against New Zealand

These are the men selected to try make history for the second Saturday in a row.

Andy Farrell has made just one change to his Ireland team for the Third Test against New Zealand, in Wellington, and another on his replacements bench.


With Garry Ringrose sitting out for a minimum rest period of at least 12 days, after a confirmed concussion, Bundee Aki starts and inside centre and Robbie Henshaw shifts out to 13.

Johnny Sexton has been cleared to play, and captain, despite limping off near the end of last weekend's first ever Test win against the All Blacks on their home soil. The one change on the Irish bench will see Keith Earls wearing No.23, this Saturday.

Ireland team Ireland players, from left, Josh van der Flier, Peter O’Mahony and Tadhg Beirne face the 'haka'. (Photo by Brendan Moran/Sportsfile)

Andy Farrell backing his pack

The pack remains the same, with Leinster front-rowers Andrew Porter, Dan Sheehan and Tadhg Furlong starting again, with Tadhg Beirne and James Ryan in the front row.

The back row features Peter O'Mahony, cleared to play after a failed in-game Head Injury Assessment last week, Josh van der Flier and Caelan Doris.

The Test Series is level at 1-1, heading into this game at Sky Stadium in Wellington [a.k.a 'The Cake Tin']. An Irish victory would deliver an historic, first ever series triumph in New Zealand.



15. Hugo Keenan
14. Mack Hansen
13. Robbie Henshaw
12. Bundee Aki
11. James Lowe
10. Johnny Sexton (captain)
9. Jamison Gibson-Park

1. Andrew Porter
2. Dan Sheehan
3. Tadhg Furlong
4. Tadhg Beirne
5. James Ryan
6. Peter O'Mahony
7. Josh van der Flier
8. Caelan Doris

REPLACEMENTS: Rob Herring, Cian Healy, Finlay Bealham, Kieran Treadwell, Jack Conan, Conor Murray, Joey Carbery, Keith Earls.

Ireland team


The New Zealand team, meanwhile, is as we predicted on Wednesday.

Sam Whitelock returns to the second row, meaning Scott Barrett can go back to blindside. Blues tighthead Nepo Laulala comes into the team, as do Crusaders stars David Havili and Will Jordan. That pair get respective starts at inside centre and on the right wing.


15. Jordie Barrett
14. Will Jordan
13. Rieko Ioane
12. David Havili
11. Sevu Reece
10. Beauden Barrett
9. Aaron Smith

1. George Bower
2. Codie Taylor
3. Nepo Laulala
4. Brodie Retallick
5. Sam Whitelock
6. Scott Barrett
7. Sam Cane
8. Ardie Savea

Stream the biggest sporting moments with NOW, including all the Test match between Ireland and New Zealand, on Saturday July 16 [from 8:05am].


“Keith Earls ain’t finished yet” - Darren Cave & Greg O'Shea talk about their past experiences training and playing with Keith Earls, and think people that don’t rate him as a great player don’t know what they’re talking about.