Heroes Rugby Challenge 2011
Five Kiwis sign up for charity match
ESPNscrum Staff
November 15, 2011
Andrew Mehrtens kicks a conversion during the All Blacks' win over Ireland, Ireland v New Zealand, Lansdowne Road, November 15, 1997
Andrew Mehrtens will pull on a pair of rugby boots for the charity match © Getty Images

The Southern Hemisphere side for the 'Heroes Rugby Challenge' have announced their latest raft of high-profile talent set to line up against a Northern Hemisphere select.

There will be three generations of All Blacks talent on show - representing the past, the present and the future of New Zealand Rugby - with Wayne Smith in line to coach the Southern Hemisphere select for the 'Help for Heroes' fundraiser. World Cup winner Adam Thomson will line-up and will play alongside All Blacks legends fly-half Andrew Mehrtens and scrum-half Justin Marshall. They will be joined by New Zealand Maori Jackson Willison and promising youngster Jeremy Thrush.

The fixture will mark the tenth anniversary of Britain's Armed Forces Operations in Afghanistan and is set to take place on December 3 at Twickenham. The first Help for Heroes match attracted 52,000 supporters back in 2008 raising £1.46m in the process.

And Mehrtens - formerly of Harlequins - is relishing the chance to run out at Twickenham once again. "I can't wait to be back at Twickenham," Mehrtens said. "It's a very special place to play rugby and I look forward to lining up with young kiwi talent like Jeremy Thrush and Jackson Willison.

"I've played some significant matches at Twickenham over the years but this one is right up there. I'm very proud to be supporting the Heroes Rugby Challenge is and I urge rugby fans to do the same by buying a ticket and helping us pack out Twickenham on December 3."

Following the All Blacks' victorious World Cup campaign, former assistant coach Smith is looking at the five Kiwis selected to shine in front of the London crowd. "The Heroes Rugby Challenge is going to be an absolute beauty of a game and it's great to see the All Blacks well represented," Smith said.

"These five blokes stand for All Black rugby past, present and future. Andrew Mehrtens and Justin Marshall are legends of the game with 151 international caps between them, Adam Thomson is a current member of the winning World Cup Squad and Willison and Thrush represent the potential next generation of All Black winners."

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

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