Akira Ioane gets All Blacks call, Nonu overlooked

Sonny Bill Williams was grilled by a young boy called Eru at Starship Hospital in Auckland

Sonny Bill Williams was grilled by a young boy called Eru at Starship Hospital in Auckland

The squad will be part of the camps as they prepare for the title defence in Japan and according to a statement released by New Zealand Rugby, the foundation days has been aimed at allowing the All Blacks management team and top players to lay the foundation for the worldwide season ahead.

Outside back George Bridge and former Melbourne Rebels prop Tyrel Lomax have earned one Test cap each, off the bench against Japan past year when a virtual second XV played.

However, his Chiefs coach Colin Cooper told reporters in Hamilton on Tuesday that he had been cleared for contact, just in time for the All Blacks" first "foundation day' next Monday in Wellington.

Ma'a Nonu's bid for a Rugby World Cup return appears to be over after the veteran centre was not selected in an extended All Blacks squad. The challenge for Nonu, now, is to stitch together more compelling performances to convince the selectors why he would be an asset at the global tournament.

Also included is Chiefs flank Sam Cane, who has not played since fracturing his neck against the Springbok in October a year ago.

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Players will undergo fitness testing and partake in planning meetings during the one-day camp.

New Zealand Rugby said in a statement the foundation days were "aimed at allowing the All Blacks management team and top players to lay the foundation for the worldwide season ahead".

One for players based in the North Island will be held in Auckland on May 20, with another for South Island-based players in Christchurch on June 3.

Sam Cane has been cleared to return to contact training after breaking a bone in his neck and received another boost when he was invited to a one-day All Blacks camp, suggesting the flanker is still in coach Steve Hansen's Rugby World Cup thoughts.

Forwards: Dane Coles, Liam Coltman, Nathan Harris, Codie Taylor, Owen Franks, Nepo Laulala, Tyrel Lomax, Joe Moody, Angus Ta'avao, Karl Tu'inukuafe, Ofa Tu'ungafasi, Scott Barrett, Jackson Hemopo, Brodie Retallick, Patrick Tuipulotu, Samuel Whitelock, Sam Cane, Vaea Fifita, Shannon Frizell, Akira Ioane, Kieran Read, Ardie Savea, Liam Squire, Matt Todd and Luke Whitelock.

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