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Simon Mannering is one of a host of Kiwi stars who have been rested for their pool match against Scotland.

Kiwis Coach David Kidwell has brought back nearly 100 Tests of experience for Saturday's World Cup clash against Tonga in Hamilton, making six changes despite a last-start thrashing of Scotland.

After sitting out the Kiwis' 74-6 win at Christchurch last Saturday, veterans Thomas Leuluai returns to the No.9 jersey while Simon Mannering slots in at 11.

Jordan Rapana will start on the right wing, while Panthers flanker Dallin Watene-Zelezniak gets his first ever chance to play in front of his home crowd, partnering with club teammate, centre Dean Whare, on the left edge.

Kodi Nikorima returns to partner Shaun Johnson in the halves with Te Maire Martin named in the reserves. Kenny Bromwich, Elijah Taylor and Peta Hiku also drop to the reserves while Jason Nightingale drops out of the 21.

Isaac Liu is the only new face the bench, with Addin Fonua-Blake also dropping out of the 21.


New Zealand team to face Tonga:

1 Roger Tuivasa-Sheck
2 Dallin Watene-Zelezniak
3 Dean Whare
4 Brad Takairangi
5 Jordan Rapana
6 Kodi Nikorima
7 Shaun Johnson
8 Martin Taupau
9 Thomas Leuluai
10 Jared Waerea-Hargreaves
11 Simon Mannering
12 Joseph Tapine
13 Adam Blair
14 Nelson Asofa-Solomona
15 Russell Packer
16 Isaac Liu
17 Danny Levi

18 Kenny Bromwich
19 Te Maire Martin
20 Elijah Taylor
21 Peta Hiku 


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National Rugby League respects and honours the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.

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