All Black Franks out of Australia Test

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All Blacks prop Owen Franks has been ruled out of this weekend’s Rugby Championship Test against Australia with an Achilles problem, team management said Thursday.

The All Blacks said Nepo Laulala would replace Franks in the starting XV, with Jeff Toomaga-Allen on the bench.

Coach Steve Hansen said 95-Test veteran Franks had been battling Achilles problems all season.

“Franks may be out for a while, so will be monitored. Taking it one step at a time,” Hansen tweeted on the All Blacks’ official feed.

The All Blacks face Australia in Dunedin after a convincing 54-34 win in Sydney last weekend. –Agence France-Presse

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