Beauden Barrett Rugby World Cup: North in shock at axing of Owen Franks by All Blacks

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Owen Franks’ shock omission due to “big and mobile” props being needed for the All Blacks’ World Cup plan.

The northern hemisphere has been shocked by the axing of veteran All Blacks prop Owen Franks for the looming World Cup in Japan.

The culling of the 108-test stalwart was the major talking point in the UK media as they digested Steve Hansen’s 31-man squad to defend the title.

Any thoughts of complacency in the New Zealand camp as the All Blacks seek a hat-trick of titles disappeared with the revelation that scrum master Franks wouldn’t be part of the action for the tournament that starts next month.

Beauden Barrett Veteran prop Owen Franks received the call he didn't want from All Blacks coach Steve Hansen on the eve of the Rugby World Cup.

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Veteran prop Owen Franks received the call he didn’t want from All Blacks coach Steve Hansen on the eve of the Rugby World Cup.

“Ruthless Steve Hansen leaves big names at home” screamed the headline in Ireland’sIndependentas they surmised that Franks had paid the price for “a poor showing” in his final season for the Crusaders before taking his skills north to England.

READ MORE:
* ABs squad named
* Why ABs are RWC favourites
* A pessimist’s take on the AB squad
* AB skipper Read feels for axed Franks
* Classy Hansen at his very best

Ireland’sTelegraphsuggested the fate of Franks should be considered as the Irish look to shore up their squad after some indiffere

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