With the World Cups approaching in 2019 and 2022, it’s the time for New Zealand’s national team to be in World Cup 2019 and the 2022 World Cup.
“We’re going to have to wait for 2019, we’ll have to get to the World cup and then 2022,” New Zealand coach Wayne Bennett said on Saturday.
He said he wanted the team to make the World team, which will be comprised of 10 players.
“We can make the squad but we need to wait until 2019 and then we’ll make a decision.”
Bennett said he had no problem with the New Zealander players leaving New Zealand for the World.
“I have no problems with them leaving for a year and a half and playing in the top-flight.
I think they’ve done a good job.
I’m confident they’ll play well in the 2019 World Cup.”
“I think they’re going through a difficult period and we need them to stay positive.
I know the squad has to get better.
I’ve got to do something different.”
If the squad fails to win the World title in 2019, Bennett will be able to start to restructure his squad.
“The way it’s going to go, I can’t change that, but we’re not there yet.
We need to get stronger and that’s the way I’ve been looking at it.
Bennetts first World Cup squad for 2019: Fergus McFadden (back-row), Tomi Juric, Samu Manoa, Kaino Pereira, Josh Reynolds, Taulupe Faletau, Matty Johns, James Tedesco, Ma’a Nonu, Jarryd Hayne, Kade Snowden, Jaelen Feeney, Matiu Perama.
New Zealand v Argentina in a World Cup qualifier in March 2019 Brent Davies (centre) and Josh Reynolds (back) at the World Rugby Championship.
Photo: Getty Brett McMurphy is a rugby union expert and author of the forthcoming book The New Zealand Rugby Union: An Unauthorized Biography.
Follow him on Twitter @mcthunder