All Blacks star wing Will Jordan is the latest COVID-19 casualty in a growing outbreak within the New Zealand camp before the series opener against Ireland in Auckland on Saturday.
He joins coaches Ian Foster, John Plumtree and Scott McLeod, as well as midfield players David Havili and Jack Goodhue to return positive tests.
First-five Richie Mo’unga is currently not training due to a stomach virus, but is expected to be fine for the first test at Auckland's Eden Park.
Former Ireland coach and now New Zealand selector Joe Schmidt has been drafted in to help fill the void, and will work with remaining assistant coaches Brad Mooar and Greg Feek.
"We've got Joe Schmidt coming in tomorrow and Thursday to help out," Mooar confirmed.
"We need hands on the ground, and that's a wonderful resource. Who better to have than Joe to come in and cast an eye over a bit of detail, and put his shoulder to the wheel there for us."
Jordan joins a growing list of Crusaders players to come down with COVD-19 and is the third from the Super Rugby Pacific champions ruled out of the first test, alongside Havili and Goodhue.
The standout wing was expected to start at Eden Park and it remains to be seen if anyone will join Braydon Ennor as a call-up to the squad, after the All Blacks confirmed his addition on Monday.
But rather than look at Jordan's absence as a loss for the All Blacks, captain Sam Cane says it only presents a chance for another player to take in the starting side.
"It's terrible timing for [Will], for everyone who's got COVID," said Cane. "We've talked about it before, but there's a lot of depth and competition for places.
"I don't know if [Will] was going to be starting or not, but I'd say there was a pretty good chance. It just means someone else will step up in his place, another opportunity for someone."
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