Hansen plans to reshuffle pack

Hansen plans to reshuffle pack

New Zealand coach Steve Hansen has confirmed he plans to reshuffle his pack for the final two matches of the Rugby Championship.

The All Blacks have already wrapped up this year's title after winning their opening four matches, and they can now play without any pressure in their final two games against Argentina in Buenos Aires on October 1 and South Africa in Durban one week later.

The likes of fly-half Aaron Cruden and loose forward Sam Cane have already been ruled out of the rest of the series with respective groin and hamstring injuries, while blindside flanker Jerome Kaino is a doubt for the trip to Argentina after injuring his shoulder in Saturday's 41-13 victory over South Africa.

Kaino could still feature against the Pumas, but Hansen has now confirmed that he does intend to utilise his squad over the coming weeks.

"We're getting to that point in the season where we have to roll the dice anyway," he said. "You can't keep playing the same athletes the whole time and expect to have that same zing."

Following the conclusion of the Rugby Championship the reigning world champions will face autumn internationals against Ireland, Italy and France, and Hansen believes it is important he gives some of his fringe players’ international experience in those matches.

He added: "We're coming to the end of the season when we go round the world twice in eight weeks and play seven Test matches so we're going to have to use the rest of the squad."