Beauden Barrett Wallabies, All Blacks in experimental phase for Bledisloe Cup

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Australia and New Zealand will continue searching for optimal combinations ahead of the Rugby World Cup when their experimental teams meet Saturday at the start of a two-test series for the Bledisloe Cup.

Rather than hone combinations both teams have opted to tinker with their lineups in the late stages of their build-ups to the world championship, which begins in Japan in less than six weeks.

The All Blacks have named Ardie Savea on the blindside flank for the first time in his 36-test career as part of what head coach Steve Hansen calls his best back row combination.

They have continued, for the second test in a row, the two playmaker approach which sees Richie Mo’unga at flyhalf and Beauden Barrett at fullback and they will try another midfield combination.

The Wallabies have chosen the prodigal James O’Connor at center in a move which surprised even the All Blacks and which hints at an attempt to play a more attacking style.

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