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Otago No 10 Josh Ioane knew before the squad announcement that he might not make it but vowed to stay ready in case of injuries.
OPINION:There were hard luck stories and there were surprises when New Zealand Rugby chairman Brent Impey read out the All Blacks squad to go to the Rugby World Cup.
Ngani Laumape could do no more over the past two years but when Ryan Crotty came off the bench and saved the All Blacks at Twickenham last year the Hurricanes midfielder was always up against it.
As for Owen Franks, what can you say? Don’t buy into the argument that he was only ever a scrummager. When the All Blacks started putting tight five forwards into the middle of paddock and asked them to be ball players and carriers, Franks did it. But he has emptied the tank and no longer gets around like he used to.
But there was also a risk: the All Blacks appear committed to a dual playmaker system but have left the country’s third-best No 10, Josh Ioane, at home.
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* 2019 Rugby World Cup: Do the All Blacks’ veteran contingent have enough left?
* Rugby World Cup 2019: Joe Schmid
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