All Black flanker Victor Vito could be out of the second Test against Ireland in Christchurch on Saturday while number eight Kieran Read has been cleared of concussion.
Vito left the field in Saturday's 42-10 win at Eden Park with a
deep gash to his eye but it has since been revealed that he has
injured a medial ligament in his knee which could potentially keep
him out of the second Test. A decision on Vito is expected this
Adam Thomson, who came on to the field for Vito on Saturday and scored a second half try, will take over the number six jersey if his rival can't play while there is a good chance an extra loose forward could be added to the squad.
Influential number eight Read suffered a suspected concussion on Saturday after he was left dazed on the ground in the second half, and then comically popped up in support of a breaking Israel Dagg, but he has since been cleared.
"He is in a good spot.... I just had a meeting with him.... and
yes he is (good to play this weekend)," assistant coach Ian Foster
said in Christchurch today.
20 year-old Sam Cane is the only other loose forward in the squad of 30 and his promotion to the bench could make sense against an Ireland side who are committed but limited.
"The first two Tests I think are about establishing ourselves and then if we have the opportunity or a bit of breathing space then we might make one or two changes," Hansen said.
"It would be nice to introduce a couple of other young players into Test rugby, whether it's off the bench or starting."