The return of Regan Ware and the introduction of Joe Ravouvou will boost the All Blacks Sevens ahead of this weekend's World Series stopover in Hong Kong.

The pair bring size and pace, two areas in which New Zealand have been lacking after six rounds of the World Series.

The 14-man squad side features three changes from last month's Vancouver tournament. Auckland flyer Ravouvou has been selected in the team for the first time while Sam Dickson returns from injury and Ware comes back into the team.

All Blacks Sevens head coach Scott Waldrom said that having a fully fit squad has made a difference.


"We've had a good build-up heading into Hong Kong, especially being able to welcome back four players who have been injured so far this season. It's been great having them fully participating in training and you can see the increased competition amongst the players now that we have a fully fit squad," Waldrom said.

The Hong Kong 10s tournament, running from April 5-6 before the Hong Kong Sevens, will also provide some valuable international game and tournament time with four contracted All Blacks Sevens players, Lewis Ormond, Tone Ng Shiu, Teddy Stanaway and Joe Webber all playing.

"We head to Hong Kong with a large number of players involved in the two big events this week. We welcome Sam Dickson back and Joe Ravouvou for the first time into our 14 preparing for the Hong Kong Sevens. It's also great for Teddy, Lewis and Joe to get their first hit-out of international rugby for the year at the Hong Kong 10s on Wednesday and Thursday.

"Having these guys return has brought an edge to training these past few weeks and I expect that to carry on into this weekend's sevens tournament.

"Hong Kong is the Holy Grail of sevens tournaments and brings out the best in teams so we are excited about the challenges ahead and believe we have the ability to do well if we get the basics right and play with consistency which is what we have been working on in training.

"No pool is easy these days but they don't get much harder than this weekend's Hong Kong pool with a Welsh team that is capable of beating anyone on their day, an improving Japanese side that will take confidence out of their result against us at the Rio Olympics and a red-hot Fijian outfit who always relishes playing in Hong Kong."

New Zealand are a solid fourth on the standings, with 84 points, but a long way behind series leaders South Africa on 126.

All Blacks Sevens in pool play:
Friday April 7
11.32pm NZT v Wales


Saturday April 8
4.50pm NZT v Japan
9.12pm NZT v Fiji

Sunday April 9
Finals day

The team is:
Scott Curry (Bay of Plenty, c), Dylan Collier (Southland), DJ Forbes (Counties Manukau), Iopu Iopu-Aso (Taranaki), Trael Joass (Tasman), Vilimoni Koroi (Otago),Tim Mikkelson (Waikato), Sione Molia (Counties Manukau), Joe Ravouvou (Auckland), Isaac Te Tamaki (Waikato), Beaudein Waaka (Taranaki), Regan Ware (Bay of Plenty)

13th man: Andrew Knewstubb (Tasman), Travelling reserve: Sam Dickson (Canterbury)