Smith, Crotty injuries a headache for All Blacks

Ben Smith of the New Zealand All Blacks passes during a training session at Toyota Park on November 1, 2016 in Chicago, Illinois. Photo: Phil Walter/Getty Images/AFP

AUCKLAND – All Blacks vice captain Ben Smith and centre Ryan Crotty are injury concerns for the rest of the series against the British and Irish Lions after they came off during the 30-15 victory in the first test at Eden Park on Saturday.

Fullback Smith failed a head injury assessment during the first half, while Crotty limped off later in the spell with a hamstring injury and will definitely miss next week's test in Wellington, coach Steve Hansen said.

"Ben Smith failed a concussion test and he will go through the protocols," Hansen told reporters. "Ryan Crotty has pulled his hammy, so we already had Jack Goodhue in as a replacement to help him out with his ribs.

READ: Ben Smith unable to train after concussion

"Jack will be staying with us, and we will try to get Ryan ready maybe for the last test if we're lucky."

Hansen said earlier on Saturday that hooker Dane Coles had been ruled out of the series due to fitness issues after he had been unable to train since March with knee and calf injuries and then concussion symptoms.

The Lions play the Wellington Hurricanes on Tuesday before the second test next Saturday in New Zealand's capital.

The series concludes on July 8 with the third test in Auckland.


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