John Kirwan's son Niko named in All Whites squad for Canada friendly in Spain

  • 15/03/2018
The midfielder has been named in the squad to face Canada in a friendly.
The midfielder has been named in the squad to face Canada in a friendly. Photo credit: Getty Images

Niko Kirwan, son of former All Black John, has been named in the 24-man All Whites squad for the upcoming friendly against Canada.

Kirwan is one of eight uncapped players named by Fritz Schmid which include goalkeepers Max Crocombe, Michael Woud, Nik Tzanev, defenders Nikko Boxall and Adam Mitchell, midfielder Sarpreet Singh and forward Andre De Jong.

The 22-year-old currently plays for third division Italian side AC Mestre. He has played 18 times for the Venice-based club.

There are also three players – Tim Payne, Matt Ridenton and Cameron Howieson – who are recalled to the national squad after long absences.

Schmid, who became the 17th All Whites Head Coach earlier this month, is happy with the balance of his squad.

"The squad offers a good mix of experienced players, new players and some who are returning to the environment," Schmid said in a statement.

Sarpreet Singh.
Sarpreet Singh. Photo credit: Getty Images

"It is confirming our intention to take a good look at all of the potential All Whites because that will be the task in the next months. Not only here in the Spain camp but throughout the next few windows."

A number of established players were not selected due to club commitments - those included Chris Wood, Stefan Marinovic, Bill Tuiloma, Kosta Barbarouses, Deklan Wynne, Kip Colvey and Tommy Smith.

Schmid said he understood that they had other priorities to consider.   

"We know what all of those players can offer the national team. They are not selected for this window, but they all know that they are on my watch-list and that they will be offered an opportunity to prove their value in due time."    

In the absence of both Wood and Winston Reid (injury), Schmid said the captain for this tour was still to be determined.

The match against Canada will take place at the Pinatar Arena in Spain on Sunday 25 March (NZT). 

All Whites squad to play Canada: Max Crocombe, Michael Woud, Nik Tzanev, Nikko Boxall, Michael Boxall, Adam Mitchell, Themi Tzimopolous, Dane Ingham, Sam Brotherton, Tom Doyle, Storm Roux, Clayton Lewis, Tim Payne, Cameron Howieson, Sapreet Singh, Michael McGlinchey, Ryan Thomas, Matthew Ridenton, Niko Kirwan, Alex Rufer, Marco Rojas, Andre de Jong, Myer Bevan, Jeremy Brockie