Rugby Championship: Australia v New Zealand preview
Last Updated: 08/08/15 1:48pm
Richie McCaw will equal Brian O'Driscoll's record as the most capped player in international rugby history when he leads the All Blacks in Sydney for the Rugby Championship decider.
McCaw will win his 141st cap in the Sydney encounter as the All Blacks and Wallabies fight it out for the Rugby Championship title.
With both teams notching up victories over Argentina and South Africa last month, it's a winner-takes-all for the two in the final round due to the shortened format of the competition in a World Cup year.
Both are on nine points in the Championship, with a solitary point giving New Zealand top spot on points difference.
Julian Savea returns to the All Blacks team after missing out on the their first three tests of the year. Steve Hansen revealed the reason for the Hurricanes winger's absence this week, saying the flyer arrived at camp 'overweight'.
On the other wing for the All Blacks is the uncapped Nehe Milner-Skudder, who dazzled in Super Rugby this year from both full-back and wing. With Milner-Skudder in the side Ben Smith swaps the No 14 jersey for the full-back role in the final round of competition.
Veteran Dan Carter and the Highlanders' Aaron Smith are the half-backs while play-maker Sonny Bill Williams joins Conrad Smith in the midfield.
The pack has two changes from the team that beat South Africa 27-20 at Ellis Park with Luke Romano coming in for James Broadhurst in the second-row and Jerome Kaino taking the No 6 jersey from Liam Messam. Kieran Read completes the back-row.
McCaw will have his hands full at the breakdown after Wallaby coach Michael Cheika opted to pick two specialist fetchers in Michael Hooper and David Pocock, with Pocock taking up the No 8 jersey.
It is a similar tactic to the one employed by Springbok coach Heyneke Meyer, who picked three fetchers when the Springboks faced the All Blacks in Johannesburg.
There are changes aplenty in the Australian pack.
There is a straight swap in the Wallaby front-row as props Scott Sio and Sekope Kepu are promoted from the bench into the starting team, with last week's props Greg Holmes and James Slipper taking their places among the replacements.
Stephen Moore once again captains the side from the hooker berth, the only member of the tight five to retain his jersey.
Dean Mumm and the experienced James Horwill, who heads to Harlequins after the World Cup, will pack down in the second-row.
The only changes to the Wallaby backline come in the form of Toulon pair Drew Mitchell and Matt Giteau. Mitchell takes his place on the wing at the expense of Joe Tomane while Gituea returns to the team at inside centre with Matt Toomua dropping to the bench.
Australia: 15 Israel Folau, 14 Adam Ashley-Cooper, 13 Tevita Kuridrani, 12 Matt Giteau, 11 Drew Mitchell, 10 Bernard Foley, 9 Nick Phipps, 1 Scott Sio, 2 Stephen Moore (c), 3 Sekope Kepu, 4 Dean Mumm, 5 James Horwill, 6 Scott Fardy, 7 Michael Hooper, 8 David Pocock.
Replacements: 16 Tatafu Polota-Nau, 17 James Slipper, 18 Greg Holmes, 19 Will Skelton, 20 Ben McCalman, 21 Nic White, 22 Matt Toomua, 23 Kurtley Beale.
New Zealand: 15 Ben Smith, 14 Nehe Milner-Skudder, 13 Conrad Smith, 12 Sonny Bill Williams, 11 Julian Savea, 10 Dan Carter, 9 Aaron Smith, 1 Tony Woodcock, 2 Dane Coles, 3 Owen Franks, 4 Brodie Retallick, 5 Luke Romano, 6 Jerome Kaino, 7 Richie McCaw (c), 8 Kieran Read.
Replacements: 16 Codie Taylor, 17 Ben Franks, 18 Nepo Laulala, 19 Sam Whitelock, 20 Sam Cane, 21 TJ Perenara, 22 Beauden Barrett, 23 Malakai Fekitoa.
Watch Australia v New Zealand live on Sky Sports 3 HD on Saturday from 10.30am