Wallabies to play All Blacks in Wellington in Bledisloe II

The Rugby Championship
by Emma Greenwood

The Wallabies will take on the All Blacks in Wellington in August, with the second match of the Bledisloe series locked in after New Zealand announced its home Test schedule for 2020.

While the All Blacks will start and end their season at Eden Park - taking on Wales on July 4, before ending their domestic Test program there against South Africa on September 5 - Australia will escape its hoodoo ground, with their Rugby Championship clash pencilled in for the newly named Sky Stadium in Wellington.

Rugby Australia announced last week the Bledisloe opener would be held in Melbourne on August 8, with today's announcement confirming Bledisloe II will be a week later in Wellington.

The match will be a homecoming of sorts for Wallabies coach Dave Rennie, a former Wellingtonian, who will just have taken the reins in Australia.

The 2020 season also marks a new era for the All Blacks, who will welcome a new coach after Steve Hansen's planned departure following the World Cup.

Hansen's future also became clearer today when he confirmed a move to Japan's Top League with Toyota Verblitz as a consultant and advisor, working alongside former Waratahs assistant Simon Cron, the Verblitz head coach.

 

 

The All Blacks are yet to name Hansen's replacement, who will guide the All Blacks in six home Tests, including a series against Wales in Auckland and Wellington, one-off Test against Scotland in Dunedin and Rugby Championship matches in Wellington (Wallabies), Hamilton (Argentina) and Auckland (South Africa).

NZR chief rugby officer Nigel Cass said there would be "a degree of the unknown" following the World Cup, where New Zealand lost to England in the semi-finals.

"The All Blacks will have a new head coach and some new players and I’m sure New Zealanders can’t wait to again get behind the team," he said.

“Wales and Australia also have new coaches and will bring a lot of energy. It’s fantastic to have Scotland back in New Zealand after such a long time.

“And, what better finish to the home schedule than a Test against South Africa at Eden Park for the Freedom Cup.”