Four changes to All Blacks to face Argentina

The All Blacks have delivered on their promise to rotate players on the road, making four changes to their starting side to face Argentina in Buenos Aires.

There are two changes to the pack and two to the backline for Saturday's Rugby Championship clash, while an altered reserves bench features uncapped outside back Damian McKenzie.

There is no place for halfback Aaron Smith, arguably the best player in the All Blacks' last-start 41-13 defeat of South Africa in Christchurch to secure the Rugby Championship.

His place is taken by TJ Perenara, with Tawera Kerr-Barlow promoted to the bench.

Also dropped completely is Malakai Fekitoa, with Anton Lienert-Brown named at centre.

Anton Lienert-Brown will start at outside centre ahead of Malakai Fekitoa. Photo: Getty Images

It is just the second start for 21-year-old Lienert-Brown, who wore the No.12 jersey against Australia in Wellington last month in the first of three appearances.

It is also a second start for lock Patrick Tuipulotu, whose seven other caps have been off the bench. Sam Whitelock drops to the reserves bench and, if used, will play his 80th Test and become New Zealand's most capped lock, surpassing Ian Jones.

Liam Squire has headed off Highlanders teammate Elliot Dixon to replace injured blindside flanker Jerome Kaino.

It is the maiden Test start for three-cap forward Squire while Dixon, whose lone cap was a start against Wales in Dunedin, is on the bench.

Ofa Tu'ungafasi, who also made his debut in the Dunedin Test, is tighthead prop cover instead of Charlie Faumuina.

Ofa Tu'ungafasi made his Test debut in June. Photo: Getty Images

The most intriguing bench selection is that of diminutive Chiefs utility McKenzie.

He was among the most exciting backs in Super Rugby this season but coach Steve Hansen has been reluctant to introduce the 21-year-old at Test level.

Hansen says it is time to see what some of his fringe players can do.

"Our key focus was to select a team that would maintain a high standard of performance and also allow us to grow our player depth and experience in the Test arena," he said.

"The expectation is that this side will build on the performances we've produced so far this year and play a game we can all be proud of."

The All Blacks, who are on a 15-Test winning streak, have never lost in their 23 Tests against Argentina.

They won their match in Hamilton earlier this month 57-22.

All Blacks:

Ben Smith, Israel Dagg, Anton Lienert-Brown, Ryan Crotty, Julian Savea, Beauden Barrett, TJ Perenara, Kieran Read (capt), Ardie Savea, Liam Squire, Brodie Retallick, Patrick Tuipulotu, Owen Franks, Dane Coles, Joe Moody. Reserves: Codie Taylor, Wyatt Crockett, Ofa Tu'ungafasi, Sam Whitelock, Elliot Dixon, Tawera Kerr-Barlow, Lima Sopoaga, Damian McKenzie.

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