NZ sevens squad named for Las Vegas tournament

Last updated 16:17 16/01/2014
Akira Ioane
Getty Images
NEW MAN: Akira Ioane, left, in action for Auckland.

Relevant offers

Sevens

Netballer Grant getting used to sevens contact Bunce tipped to make big impression in sevens Blyde and Broughton in women's national sevens Keshia Grant set to make her NZ Sevens debut Several new faces in New Zealand Sevens side Samoa sevens lack star names for Gold Coast Kenya sevens side decimated in wage dispute George Smith's Tonga Olympic dream dashed IRB tightens up guidelines for Olympics sevens Tietjens rebuilding with loss of Super players

Auckland 18-year-old Akira Ioane is the bolter in the All Blacks Sevens squad to play in Las Vegas next weekend.

Having finished at Auckland Grammar only last year, Ioane was one of the top performers for the Blue and Whites on their way to the national sevens final on Sunday.

Coach Gordon Tietjens said Ioane was an exciting young player: ''He is someone we want to grow as a sevens player. He has all the attributes and the skill set of a fine rugby player and performed very well over the last three days,'' he said

''He's exciting, very fast, very skilful and it will be real challenge for him his first tournament, but I am sure he will thrive on that.''

Key playmaker Tomasi Cama misses out on selection due to a calf injury, while Ben Lam and Declan O'Donnell also miss out.

''[Cama] is certainly the best half back in the world in sevens and having him injured is a real concern but he will bounce back,'' Tietjens said. 

''At the same time we are building depth and Gillies Kaka I am sure will step up to that role.

''He was the best player at Rugby World Cup in Russia and we have very capable Mark Jackman as well who can thrive in that position.''

Tietjens said he was happy with the balance in the squad.

''This is a strong side with a lot of experience and that's the advantage with this squad now, I have some very experienced players who can teach the younger players.''

New Zealand are yet to win at the Las Vegas sevens, having finished second three times.

All Blacks Sevens squad: Scott Curry, Ambrose Curtis, Sam Dickson, DJ Forbes (capt), Bryce Heem, Akira Ioane, Mark Jackman, Gillies Kaka, Tim Mikkelson, Lote Raikabula, Sherwin Stowers and Joe Webber.

Ad Feedback

- Fairfax Media

Special offers
Opinion poll

What effect will a potential ban on booze at Rugby Sevens 2015 have on you?

I'd no longer go ... what's the point?

I'd buy a ticket, with rugby the priority again.

Ban or no ban, I'm still going.

I'd rather watch 'Wheel of Fortune' on a 24/7 loop than 7s.

Vote Result

Related story: Booze ban hovers over sevens

Featured Promotions

Sponsored Content