Brian Lara made 375 to break the record for most runs in a Test innings 25 years ago - and his unbeaten 400 a decade on remains the highest score today. 

New Zealand have been dealt a blow with All Blacks full-back Damian McKenzie set to miss this year's Rugby World Cup after rupturing his anterior cruciate ligament.

All Blacks head coach Steve Hansen announced the ACL injury on Monday after McKenzie was hurt during the Chiefs' Super Rugby win over the Blues on Saturday.

McKenzie limped off the Waikato Stadium pitch after attempting to make a tackle early in the second half of the Chiefs' 33-29 victory.

The 23-year-old – a 21-time international – is now all but out of the World Cup picture, with the tournament scheduled to get underway in Japan in September.

"He's done an ACL and looks to be out for eight to nine months which is a real shame for him," Hansen said.

"His World Cup opportunity's gone but he's still young enough to make probably the next two. It's just important he gets his knee right and takes the time to be able to come back and achieve the dreams that he wants to achieve.

"It's sad for him obviously. It creates another opportunity for someone else. We've got to expect injuries and there will be more than just him I'd say."

Defending champions the All Blacks will face South Africa, Italy, Canada and Namibia in Pool B.

New Zealand will open their title defence against South Africa in Yokohama on September 21.

Blues and New Zealand centre Sonny Bill Williams will be out for six weeks due to a knee injury.

Williams will undergo minor arthroscopy surgery on Friday and is not expected to return until late May.

The 33-year-old did the damage when laying on a try for Otere Black in a Super Rugby clash with the Stormers on March 30.

Williams will be hoping to be back in action for what could be a push for a quarter-final spot.

The rugby league convert faces competition for a place in the All Blacks midfield as he eyes a third Rugby World Cup triumph in Japan.

Blues head coach Leon MacDonald said: "Whatever he decides to do and puts his mind to, he sort of makes happen. If he still wants to keep playing later on he's the sort of guy you would never write off.

"He's a pretty determined guy and this year he really wants to make the World Cup squad and be a part of that. So he's pretty driven to make sure he recovers well from this and gets back on the field."

Uncapped back-row Akira Ioane has been included in an extended New Zealand squad for a foundation day ahead of the international season - but there is no place for Ma'a Nonu.

Ioane was one of 41 players named on Tuesday, along with his brother and prolific wing Rieko Ioane.

However, there was no place for veteran centre Nonu in a squad that will assemble for a gathering in Wellington on April 15.

All North Island-based players will meet up again on May 20 in Auckland, while those on the South Island will gather in Christchurch on June 3.

New Zealand Rugby head of high performance Mike Anthony revealed the dates had been chosen during a meeting with Super Rugby coaches and All Blacks management last year.

"Given the All Blacks have an incredibly short lead-in time to the upcoming international season, culminating in the Rugby World Cup, and with there being no camps during the Super Rugby season, the foundation days will provide an opportunity for All Blacks management and our leading players to start building towards what is a huge year ahead," he said.

 

New Zealand squad:

Forwards: Dane Coles, Liam Coltman, Nathan Harris, Codie Taylor, Owen Franks, Nepo Laulala, Tyrel Lomax, Joe Moody, Angus Ta'avao, Karl Tu'inukuafe, Ofa Tuungafasi, Scott Barrett, Jackson Hemopo, Brodie Retallick, Patrick Tuipulotu, Sam Whitelock, Sam Cane, Vaea Fifita, Shannon Frizell, Akira Ioane, Kieran Read, Ardie Savea, Liam Squire, Matt Todd, Luke Whitelock.
 
Backs: TJ Perenara, Aaron Smith, Te Toiroa Tahuriorangi, Beauden Barrett, Damian McKenzie, Richie Mo'unga, Ryan Crotty, Jack Goodhue, Ngani Laumape, Anton Lienert-Brown, Sonny Bill Williams, Jordie Barrett, George Bridge, Rieko Ioane, Waisake Naholo, Ben Smith.
 

Former New Zealand utility back Israel Dagg has announced his retirement from rugby.

The 30-year-old, who operated on the wing and at full-back, has struggled to recover from a long-term knee injury and has decided to hang up his boots after taking advice from medical staff.

Dagg played 66 Test matches for the All Blacks between 2010 and 2017, scoring 26 tries.

He won the World Cup with New Zealand in 2011 and claimed back-to-back Super Rugby titles with the Crusaders in 2017 and 2018.

Ross Taylor is confident New Zealand can go all the way at the Cricket World Cup and put their 2015 heartbreak behind them.

The Black Caps won all of their eight matches on the way to the final four years ago, beating England, Australia and Sri Lanka in the group stages before knockout wins over West Indies and South Africa.

Australia denied them a clean sweep, though, as they produced a stunning bowling display to limit New Zealand to 183 – a total they eclipsed inside 34 overs.

New Zealand named their squad for the 2019 edition on Tuesday, with a host of names from four years ago still heavily involved.

One of those is Taylor, and he believes Gary Stead's squad are focused on going one better this time around.

"I think the last World Cup will play a big part in terms of experience and dealing with those big games," he told Cricket New Zealand.

"We were pipped at the last one but I think the players will use that as motivation.

"The players are just a lot more experienced, still a lot of those guys who played in that final are in the side and hopefully we can go one step further in the UK."

While this year's tournament will be Taylor's fourth, it will be Henry Nicholls' World Cup debut and he is relishing the opportunity having watched the heartbreak in 2015.

"It's awesome to be named for the World Cup, it's my first World Cup squad, it's pretty surreal," he said.

"What's ahead is a lot of hard work leading up to it, and obviously once we get there in England making sure we hit the ground running.

"We've played a lot of white-ball cricket in the last 12-18 months so we're coming in with a good diet of that."

Uncapped wicketkeeper Tom Blundell and leg-spinner Ish Sodhi have been picked in a strong New Zealand squad for this year's Cricket World Cup.

Blundell, 28, is yet to play a one-day international, but was named in the 15-man party for the tournament, which will be held in England and Wales from May to mid-July.

Tom Latham will continue as first-choice keeper in what is an experienced squad boasting more than 1,000 ODI appearances.

Ross Taylor is set for his fourth World Cup, while captain Kane Williamson, paceman Tim Southee and batsman Martin Guptill will play their third.

"The World Cup is the pinnacle of cricket and to be the first nation to name a squad for the tournament is really exciting," New Zealand coach Gary Stead said on Wednesday.

"I'd like to congratulate all the players selected. To represent your country at a World Cup is a huge honour and I know the entire squad and support staff are looking forward to the challenges ahead.

"As with any squad named for a major tournament, there's had to be some tough calls and there will be some disappointed players.

"The key for us was finding the right balance for the squad and making sure we had our bases covered for what is going to be a very competitive World Cup.

"As a one-day unit we've been pretty consistent over the past few years and possess a very experienced group of core players, proven at the top level.

"We will have three training camps through April which will involve many players who are not in this squad as it's important they're ready on stand-by should we lose anybody in the lead up to or at the tournament."

The Black Caps begin their World Cup campaign against Sri Lanka in Cardiff on June 1.

 

New Zealand: Kane Williamson (c), Tom Blundell, Trent Boult, Colin de Grandhomme, Lockie Ferguson, Martin Guptill, Matt Henry, Tom Latham, Colin Munro, Jimmy Neesham, Henry Nicholls, Mitchell Santner, Ish Sodhi, Tim Southee, Ross Taylor.

New Zealand and Highlanders winger Waisake Naholo will miss the next six weeks of action after suffering a medial collateral ligament injury in training.

Naholo has featured in all of the Highlanders' six Super Rugby matches this season – scoring one try – but he is set for a lengthy spell on the sidelines.

The All Blacks winger damaged his knee during a training session on Monday, with scans showing a grade two injury.

Naholo's rehabilitation has already begun with the 27-year-old wearing a brace to protect his knee.

Should Naholo – who has 26 international caps - return on schedule, he could be ready to face the Lions on May 18.

New Zealand centre Ryan Crotty will leave the Crusaders and join Japanese club Kubota Spears after the Rugby World Cup.

The 30-year-old has made 142 Super Rugby appearances for the champions since making his debut 11 years ago and has won 44 Test caps for the world champions, but he will move on at the end of the year.

All Blacks captain Kieran Read last month announced he will finish his Test career to link up with Toyota Verblitz following the World Cup in Japan and Crotty will also ply his trade in the Top League from next year.

"The All Blacks, Crusaders and Canterbury rugby have been such an important part of my life and I'm grateful for every opportunity I've had to represent my country, my province and my family over the years," Crotty said.

"I'm a proud Cantabrian and Christchurch will always be home, but I'm really looking forward to taking on a new challenge in the Top League as part of the Kubota Spears club.

"I know I'll look back at the end of my career in New Zealand with really fond memories of the experiences I've had and what I've achieved alongside my good mates, but for now my focus is enjoying the season ahead and helping to lead this Crusaders side one last time in 2019."

All Blacks head coach Steve Hansen said: "Crotts has been one of the mainstays of our midfield for many years and is a world-class footballer.  

"He's a very physical, well-balanced rugby player, an outstanding communicator and decision-maker, who runs great lines and has a great pass. He's been a real asset to the All Blacks, Crusaders and Canterbury and will leave New Zealand rugby at the end of the season with our very best wishes." 

One All Black who will not be ending his international career is scrum-half Aaron Smith, who on Monday signed a two-year deal with New Zealand Rugby and the Highlanders.

All Blacks star Aaron Smith signed a two-year deal with New Zealand Rugby (NZR) and Super Rugby side the Highlanders.

Smith, 30, is the second-most capped Highlanders player in history with 129 appearances, while he has played 82 Tests for the All Blacks.

The half-back, whose Highlanders are fourth in the New Zealand Conference, said he always wanted to stay in his homeland.

"From my earliest playing days, my focus has always been about being passionate about the teams I play for and I've always enjoyed giving 100 per cent to the teams I represent," Smith said in a statement on Monday.

"I love representing the Highlanders and the All Blacks and playing my rugby in New Zealand gives me the chance to continue to do that.

"I'm grateful to NZ Rugby and the Highlanders organisation for all the support they've given me over my career and for the opportunities they have provided for myself and Teagan going forward."

All Blacks head coach Steve Hansen praised Smith and said he was vital for his team.

"Nuggy has been such an outstanding player for us over many years and deserves every accolade he gets," he said.

"He's a passionate team man, a leader in our team and gives his all to the group. He works incredibly hard on his game and has been incredibly consistent since first coming into the All Blacks.

"The speed of his delivery from the base of the scrum and ruck is a key point of difference and means we can play the game at real pace, which has suited our game.

"It's fantastic news that he has committed himself to both New Zealand Rugby and the Highlanders and we congratulate him on his decision. It's also timely to congratulate him and his partner Teagan on their recent engagement and the pending birth of their first child."

Sam Whitelock is confident the injury that New Zealand skipper Kieran Read suffered on his return to action for the Crusaders is not serious.

Read made his first appearance of the Super Rugby campaign as the Crusaders thumped the Hurricanes 32-8 on Friday, but he was replaced at the interval after suffering an injury to his right leg midway through the first half.

The 33-year-old received lengthy treatment on the problem, later confirmed as a double haematoma by head coach Scott Robertson, but Whitelock took heart from the fact Read was able to complete the opening 40.

"I asked him if he was feeling all right and he said 'I'm sweet'," Whitelock was quoted as saying by stuff.co.nz.

"I've played with him heaps and you can read his body language straight away, so I knew he was sore, but he was all right to carry on."

Explaining Read's withdrawal, Robertson said: "Technically he has got a double haematoma. He got two knocks in the same place and he seized up at half-time, so we took him off.

"He went all right when he was on, he went a full 100. I find it incredible that guys like him and Sam can play at that level after such a long time out."

Read is set to end his international career after this year's Rugby World Cup and make a move to Japan with Toyota Verblitz.

New Zealand captain Kieran Read will make his first Super Rugby appearance of the season in the Crusaders' derby against the Hurricanes on Friday.

Read was given a rest after the All Blacks' tour of Europe late last year, but the number eight will be back in action at the Westpac Stadium.

The 33-year-old's return is a timely boost for the defending champions following their surprise defeat to the Waratahs last weekend.

Crusaders assistant coach Jason Ryan said: "He's trained really well.

"He's been unbelievable for us off the field in getting the boys ready to play each week. He's on his toes, he's fresh and he's looking forward to it.

"If he gets an opportunity he'll definitely be an influence for us."

Read spent a long spell out of action last year after undergoing back surgery in December 2017.

The All Blacks skipper announced earlier this month that he will leave the Crusaders to join Japanese club Toyota Verblitz after the Rugby World Cup, bringing an end to his stellar New Zealand career.

New Zealand Football (NZF) have confirmed the country's futsal national team player Atta Elayyan was among the victims of the terrorist attack in Christchurch on Friday.

Elayyan, 33, had made 19 A International appearances for the Futsal Whites.

The Kuwait-born goalkeeper was praying at Masjid Al Noor Mosque, where he was among 50 victims of the shooting.

"It is still hard to comprehend what happened in Christchurch on Friday afternoon," NZF chief executive Andrew Pragnell said in a statement. 

"On behalf of everyone at New Zealand Football our thoughts and prayers go out to anyone who has been affected by these heinous acts of violence.  

"My heart goes out to the futsal community. They are a very tight-knit group and this news of Atta's death will be devastating for all involved in the game. We feel their pain and their grief."

New Zealand Cricket chief David White says "everything changes now" regarding team security in the country following the terror attack in Christchurch.

On Friday, 49 people were killed in the attack at a mosque near Hagley Oval, with the majority of the Bangladesh Test squad in a bus outside.

Team manager Khaled Mashud said the tourists were "very lucky" not to be caught up in the incident and their Test against New Zealand was subsequently cancelled.

Bangladesh returned home after the attack and, as New Zealand mourned, Black Caps CEO White acknowledged that it would impact how teams travel in future.

"This is shocking. This will change the entire fabric of international sports hosting," he said. "I think everything changes now.

"We'll certainly be having to look at our security in depth. I think the idea of New Zealand being a safe haven is gone now."

He added: "This isn't about cricket; it's about something much bigger and much more important than that. It's about life, it's about respect; it's about family and community.

"Cricket and sport take a back-seat to personal welfare."

Team manager Khaled Mashud said Bangladesh players and staff were "very lucky" to escape unharmed as they were "three or four minutes" away from being inside a mosque where a terror attack unfolded on Friday.

Mass shootings at two Christchurch mosques resulted in 49 people being killed and 48 injured.

Mashud revealed that the majority of the tourists' squad were inside a bus outside the Al Noor mosque while a massacre took place and saw "bloodstained people staggering out".

He is quoted as saying by ESPNcricinfo. "This was a kind of accident that we would never expect nor want in any part of the world.

"We are very lucky because we had a number of us, about 17 of us, in the bus. Soumya Sarkar was also there, and we were all heading to the mosque for prayers.

"Only two of the players [Liton Das and Nayeem Hasan, as well as spin-bowling coach Sunil Joshi] had stayed back in the hotel, and rest of the squad had gone there. We were very close to the mosque, and we could see from the bus. We must have been about 50 yards from the mosque.

"I would say we were really lucky. Had we reached even three or four minutes earlier, we probably would have been inside the mosque. This could then have been a massive incident.

"We are very thankful that we weren't caught in the crossfire, but what we saw was straight out of a movie scene. We could see bloodstained people staggering out of the mosque.

"Maybe in about eight-ten minutes, we were all inside the bus and were sitting with our heads bowed, just in case someone fires at us."

The third and final Test at Hagley Oval - which was due to start on Saturday - was called off following the attacks and the Bangladesh squad will fly home as soon as possible.

Mashud said the players and staff ran through Hagley Park to the ground after being allowed to get off the bus.

He added: "When we realised that the shooters could have inflicted more damage if they had found us inside the bus all at once, we took a collective decision to escape through the back gate.

"We ran or quickly walked out through that gate. Then we were in the dressing room, and the local liaison people explained to us how we could get out of there most safely to our hotel.

"It wasn't their fault, they tried their best according to whatever they are used to in their culture. Our players supported them a lot, with inputs on what was needed at that point of time.

"Our decision to get out was timely, because in videos we saw that people came out and kept shooting later."

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