The UK media have accused the All Blacks of 'handing out confetti caps' as Steve Hansens's generous selection approach for Saturday's test against Japan in Tokyo is dissected.
Hansen named a new-look squad to take on Japan this weekend, which included debutants Dalton Papalii and Matt Proctor starting in the No 7 and No 13 jerseys respectively. As well as the two new starters, six of the eight reserves are also in line to win their first caps.
Meanwhile, the first choice All Blacks have already left for London in preparation for highly-anticipated tests against England and Ireland.
"When New Zealand face Japan in Tokyo on Saturday, the All Blacks will be thousands of miles away," wrote Gerard Meagher in The Guardian.
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"Dress it up any way you like but by announcing a squad to face the Brave Blossoms featuring eight rookies at almost the precise moment 23 frontline players were boarding a flight to London, Steve Hansen is handing out confetti caps.
"Granted Hansen's first-choice XV could pull Japan apart but if this match is to warrant test status it was incumbent on the head coach to sprinkle at least a few star names among his selection.
"Alas, second-string sides playing test matches is a trend we are only going to see more of, while Hansen's decision to do so now also demonstrates an awareness of the challenges around the corner for a side that wobbled towards the end of the Rugby Championship."
Predicting Ireland as more likely to overcome the mighty All Blacks, The Guardian identified a strong final quarter performance as the way to do it.
"The best chance that England and more likely Ireland have of overcoming New Zealand is to be in touching distance with 20 minutes to go and squeeze that little bit harder.
"For the All Blacks so often blow teams away in the last quarter and Ireland, with or without Murray, seem best equipped to avoid it happening to them.
Hansen explained his decision by highlighting the demands of an increasingly cluttered international calendar while labelling the idea that caps were being doled out freely as "nonsense".
"We play so many Test matches now that it's a nonsense when you hear people say they didn't give Test caps away years ago – they only played four or five Test matches and six or seven provincial games," he said.
"Today we're playing 14 or 15 Test matches alone and you just can't ask the same people to do it all the time and play to the level that we're expecting them and asking them to play at."
The All Blacks face Japan this Saturday before playing England on November 10.