Former All Blacks join Barbarians squad
May 8, 2013
Joe Rokocoko played 68 Tests for the All Blacks © Getty Images
Former All Blacks wing Joe Rokocoko has been included in the Barbarians side to play England and the British & Irish Lions.
Rokocoko joins former international team-mate Nick Evans in the invitation team for both games, against England at Twickenham on May 26 and the Lions in Hong Kong in June.
The Hong Kong match will be the first for the Lions before they embark on their tour of Australia.
The team also includes New Zealander Jared Payne, who is one of two uncapped players traditionally picked by the Barbarians. Payne, who was signed by Ulster from the Blues two years ago, has just extended his stay at the Irish club by a further three years.
Rokocoko, 29, played the last of his 68 Tests in 2010, having scored 46 tries. He has since played for French club Bayonne.
Evans, 32, has forged a successful career at English club Harlequins since leaving New Zealand in 2008. He played 16 Tests.
There are still more players to be added to the squad of 22, which features an array of international players. That includes a trio of Welshmen who have previously played for the Lions - hooker Matthew Rees, scrum-half Dwayne Peel and fly-half James Hook.
Backs: Jared Payne (NZ), Rowan Varty (Hong Kong), Takudzwa Ngwenya (USA), Joe Rokocoko (NZ), James Hook (Wales), Nick Evans (NZ), Kahn Fotuali'i (Samoa), Dwayne Peel (Wales), Dimitri Yachvili (France).
Forwards: Duncan Jones (Wales), BJ Botha (South Africa), Paul James (Wales), Martin Castrogiovanni (Italy), Matthew Rees (Wales), Leonardo Ghiraldini (Italy), Marco Wentzel (South Africa), Jim Hamilton (Scotland), Francois Louw (South Africa), Sam Jones (Wales), Alessandro Zanni (Italy), Sergio Parisse (Italy), Imanol Harinordoquy (France).
"These little deft touches, the nuances O'Driscoll has perfected are what Ireland will miss most." Tom Hamilton on Brian O'Driscoll's final Test in Dublin
Last year's thrashing at the hands of Wales was not the first time England have fallen to their rivals. Scrum Sevens looks at whether they have bounced back the following year
With just two rounds left in the 2014 championship, the intensity cranks up a notch at Twickenham. Tom Hamilton previews the weekend's action
"I had a perfect record against England as did a few other Welshmen. England always seemed to bring the best out of us." John Taylor on the age-old rivalry