Rugby. Teammates in U20, Barrett and Anscombe will be … opponents during Wales-All Blacks

Beauden Barrett - Gareth Anscombe
10 years later, the ex-Baby Blacks Beauden Barrett and Gareth Anscombe will come face to face.(© Icon Sport / Fotojet)

This is one of the great stories of the upcoming rugby weekend! 10 years after being crowned U20 world champion with the Baby Blacks, the two openers Beauden barrett and Gareth Anscombe will clash, during Wales-New Zealand, this Saturday, October 30, at Principality Stadium of Cardiff.

New Zealander by birth, Gareth Anscombe played in the junior world championship with the Baby Blacks in 2011, in Italy, won in the final against England (33-22). Positioned at the opening, he had finished top scorer in the competition, while the phenomenon Beauden barrett was, meanwhile, holder at the back.

4 survivors of this U20 generation in the All Blacks

Both were then trained by Gareth’s father, Mark Anscombe, who then passed through theUlster (2012-2014) and Canada (2016-2017). Also in this team were the hooker Codie taylor, the second line Brodie Retallick, and the scrum half TJ Perenara, holders with the All Blacks on Saturday at Principality Stadium of Cardiff, but also the right pillar Ben Tameifuna and the center Charles Piutau, since naturalized with Tonga.

Due to his Welsh maternal origins, Anscombe remained however selectable with the XV of Leek, his capes with the New Zealand U20s not counting as official selections. Trained in Auckland Blues and passed through Waikato chiefs, he joined Welsh club Cardiff in 2014, before being selected with the Wales one year later. Since then, the Auckland native has accumulated 27 caps with the XV du Leek, but, Saturday, October 30, it is the first time that he will face his ex-New Zealand teammates with the jersey of Red Devils.

A return from injury 812 days after his last selection

Facing his friend and ex-partner Beauden Barrett, holder like him at the opening and who will celebrate his 100e cape with the All Blacks this Saturday, Gareth Anscombe will return to the Welsh selection 812 days after leaving him with a serious injury to a knee (anterior cruciate ligament). It was in August 2019, at Twickenham, during the friendly match lost to England, just before the World Cup in Japan.

Surgery was required, as was a long period of recovery and rehabilitation. Anscombe only returned to competition last month, with the Ospreys, and played only three matches of United Rugby Championship (ex-Pro 14 and Celtic League) before being called up for selection by Wayne Pivac. He is back in great shape at the best of times to find his country of birth.

The composition of the All Blacks against Wales:

Starting XV: J. Barrett; Jordan, Lienert-Brown, Havili, R.Ioane; (o) B. Barrett, (m) Perenara; Papalii, A.Savea, Blackadder; Whitelock (cap.), Retallick; Laulala, Taylor, Moody.
Alternates: Taukei’aho, Tu’inukuafe, Lomax, Vaa’i, A.Ioane, Weber, Mo’unga, Reece.

The lineup of Wales vs New Zealand:

Starting XV: McNicholl; Lane, J. Davies, J. Williams, Adams; (o) Anscombe, (m) T. Williams; Basham, Wainwright, Moriarty; AW Jones (cap.), Beard; Francis, Elias, W. Jones
Alternates: Myhill, Carré, Lewis, Rowlands, S. Davies, G. Davies, Priestland, Thomas.

This test match, organized as part of theAutumn Nations Series, is broadcast live, this Saturday, October 30 (6.15 p.m.), on beIN SPORTS 3.

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