New Zealand: 15 Israel Dagg, 14 Cory Jane,
New Zealand have named an unchanged starting XV, with the only change to their match-day 22 being flanker Adam Thomson’s return from injury to replace Victor Vito on the bench.
This is the third time New Zealand have had an unchanged RWC line-up. France, with seven, are the only team to have played an unchanged RWC line-up more times.
The All Blacks’ previous two unchanged RWC line-ups were both for knockout matches: the RWC 1995 final they lost to South Africa 15-12 in extra time, and the RWC 2003 semi-final they lost 22-10 to Australia.
The 709 caps earned by New Zealand’s starting XV is their third highest for a RWC match, falling behind the 727 of the XV that beat France in their RWC 2011 pool match and the All Blacks record of 769 earned by the side that defeated Argentina in the quarter-final.
With an average age of 28 years and 26 days this is New Zealand’s fourth oldest RWC line-up. Their three older starting XVs were all for RWC 2011 matches: their pool-phase victories against Tonga and France, and their quarter-final win against Argentina.
Team announcement – NZ unchanged for World Cup final
13 Conrad Smith, 12 Ma’a Nonu, 11 Richard Kahui, 10 Aaron Cruden, 9 Piri Weepu, 8 Kieran Read, 7 Richie McCaw (captain), 6 Jerome Kaino, 5 Sam Whitelock, 4 Brad Thorn, 3 Owen Franks, 2 Keven Mealamu, 1 Tony Woodcock
Replacements: 16 Andrew Hore, 17 Ben Franks, 18. Ali Williams, 19. Adam Thomson,
20 Andy Ellis, 21 Stephen Donald, 22 Sonny Bill Williams
France: 15 Maxime Medard, 14 Vincent Clerc, 13 Aurelien Rougerie, 12 Maxime Mermoz,
11 Alex Palisson, 10 Morgan Parra, 9 Dimitri Yachvilli, 8 Imanol Harinordoquy, 7 Julien Bonnaire, 6 Thierry Dusautoir (Captain), 5 Lionel Nallet, 4 Pascal Pape, 3 Nicolas Mas, 2 William Servat, 1 Jean Baptiste Poux
Replacements: 16 Dimitri Szarzewski,
17 Fabien Barcella, 18 Julien Pierre, 19 Fulgence Ouedraogo, 20 Jean-Marc Doussain, 21 Francois Trinh-Duc, 22 Damien Traille
France have kept the starting line-up that defeated England in the quarter-finals and Wales in the semi-finals.
l France are the second team in RWC history to go into three consecutive matches with the same starting XV. Argentina had unchanged line-ups for their RWC 2007 quarter-final and semi-final after that same XV started their last pool match, a 30-15 victory over Ireland. They lost the third match of the streak.