Rugby World Cup 2019: Coach Steve Hansen weighs in on All Blacks quarter-final selections

Coach Steve Hansen has finally revealed his cards, naming his side for the All Blacks' quarter-final clash with Ireland.

Codie Taylor has been given the nod at hooker ahead of Dane Coles, while Brodie Retallick gets his second start in a row, pairing with Sam Whitelock.

In the backs, the hotly disputed midfield goes to Anton Lienert-Brown and Jack Goodhue, just as it did in the final pool match against Namibia.

Lienert-Brown's career-best form this year has been impossible to miss and in a heavily contested midfield, his selection at second-five was an obvious one for Hansen.

"He knows what it's like to be an All Black and how to perform," said Hansen. "How to prepare and he's in really good form - it was a no-brainer to pick him."

Hansen's rotated his midfield throughout the tournament so far and the same can now be said of the hookers, opting to start Taylor instead of Coles.

"He's playing really, really well," says Hansen. "He got a big opportunity last year, with Dane Coles being injured, and he really stood up.

"He's matured as an athlete, but also as a leader.

"We could've played them either way around. We've got a good one-two punch there, both of them are world class players."

All Blacks can inject Coles and Sonny Bill Williams as impact players.

Jordie Barrett's included in the reserves for his goal-kicking, pushing Ben Smith out of the squad.

"Ben's been playing really great since that Canadian game, he's really played well - but so has Jordie."

Hansen isn't sure how many minutes the returning Retallick will log, but saved some special praise for Scott Barrett, who's been outstanding in the incumbent's absence.

"He can play 80 [minutes] if that's what we want, but it'll be unlikely," Hansen said.

"Brodie is a bit of a freak - he has what we call a big motor. He can play whether he has had a short or long break.

all blacks squad
Photo credit: Newshub.

"But we're fortunate that we have a young man named Scott Barrett, who's a very good player in his own right."

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