10 Dec, 12:23
Ireland's John Lacey will referee his first ever RBS 6 Nations match in February, while Alain Rolland is also included in the Elite Panel in what is his last season.
He could have invoked an IRB rule to force the clubs to release players or face a ban.
Full-back Ignacio Corleto, who with Test scrum-half Agustin Pichot and wing Juan Hernandez plays for French champions Stade Francais, said the June 12th match with Toulouse was too important to miss. "It's a tough call but we're desperate to reach the championship semi-finals," he said.
The June 12th championship play-off clashes with the first test against Wales in Argentina. Argentina play Wales in the second Test on June 19th - date of the French championship semi-finals - and face the New Zealand All Blacks at Hamilton on June 26th, the date of the French championship final.
Perpignan lock Rimas Alvarez-Kairelis and Castres hooker Mario Ledesma are the other two Pumas facing the club versus country conflict of interest.
Ledesma said he would leave for Argentina if Castres were knocked out of the championship this weekend. But Perpignan look set to reach the June 19th semi-finals which would rule out Alvarez-Kairelis.
Loffreda said he would not call up France-based players for the All Black Test if they were unavailable for the Wales matches.
Former Wallaby centre Nathan Grey will lead a second-string New South Wales Waratahs team to play Scotland in Sydney on June 8th.
With 10 Waratahs in camp with the national Australian squad, centre Grey was one of just six players named on Wednesday in the NSW run-on team which started in a Super 12 game this season.
Among the regulars named in the squad with Grey were fly-half Tim Donnelly, hooker Adam Freier, winger Scott Staniforth, flanker Simon Kasprowicz, with Shaun Berne listed as a reserve.
With Matthew Burke released from his contract utility back Milton Thaiday was chosen as an outside-centre. The starting line-up included three players uncapped by NSW - lock Will Caldwell, flanker Tim McGann and fullback Peter Hewat.
McGann and Hewat played for the Australian Sevens team in France last weekend.
Four other uncapped players were named on the reserves bench, prop Adam Walsh, lock Marty Wilson, back-rower Chris Sproats and scrum-half Chris O'Young.
NSW: Peter Hewat; Elia Tuqiri, Milton Thaiday, Nathan Grey (captain), Scott Staniforth; Tim Donnelly, Tim Clark; Stephen Hoiles, Tim McGann, Simon Kasprowicz; Will Caldwell, Alister Campbell; Aaron Broughton-Rouse, Adam Freier, Gareth Hardy. Replacements: Huia Edmonds, Adam Walsh, Marty Wilson, Chris Sproats, Chris O'Young, Shaun Berne, James Hilgendorf.
Test All Black veteran Reuben Thorne was dropped from the squad to face England and Argentina, a week after he lost his captaincy to Tana Umaga.
The 41-test player was a notable absentee when a 26-man squad was named for three tests against England and Argentina later this month. Thorne, 29, lost his place to Chief's skipper Jono Gibbes, a blindside flanker converted to lock during this year's Super 12 as he led his franchise into the semifinals for the first time.
Another All Black veteran, fly half Andrew Mehrtens won a recall for the first time since 2002. The All Blacks record scorer with 932 points from 66 tests between 1995 and 2002, Mehrtens, 31, shone in the latter stages of Tuesday night's trial following his fine performance in a lost cause when the Crusaders went down to the Brumbies in the Super 12 final in Canberra last month.
The selectors also recalled Blues skipper and No 8 Xavier Rush for the first time since he won his one test cap for New Zealand in 1998. He was one of two specialist No. 8s named, the other being newcomer Mose Tuiali'i, who burst into contention following a series of bruising performances for the Crusaders.
Another consistent performer for the Blues, Sam Tuitupou, won selection, thanks to a knee injury to Aaron Mauger, which ruled him out of contention for the tests against England in Dunedin on June 12th and Auckland on June 19th.
The test against Argentina is in Hamilton on June 26th.
Coach Graham Henry told reporters Thorne had taken his demotion well. "It must be a difficult time for him but he handled it with dignity. He has a huge respect for the All Blacks shirt and what it means. I noticed the last thing he did before we left for this press conference was to go to Tana and wish him well."
Henry said Mehrtens had taken his opportunities in the past couple of weeks. "He is still a class player and we still see the class player in him."
Daniel Carter (Canterbury Crusaders), Jerry Collins (Wellington Hurricanes), Nick Evans (North Harbour), Jono Gibbes (Waikato Chiefs), Carl Hayman (Otago Highlanders), Marty Holah (Chiefs), Andrew Hore (Hurricanes), Doug Howlett (Blues), Chris Jack (Crusaders), Byron Kelleher (Chiefs), Simon Maling (Highlanders), Richie McCaw (Crusaders), Justin Marshall (Crusaders), Keven Mealamu (Blues), Kees Meeuws (Blues), Andrew Mehrtens (Crusaders), Mils Muliaina (Blues), Keith Robinson (Chiefs), Joe Rokocoko (Blues), Xavier Rush (Blues), Greg Somerville (Crusaders), Carlos Spencer (Blues), Mose Tuiali'i (Crusaders), Sam Tuitupou (Blues), Tana Umaga capt (Hurricanes), Tony Woodcock (Blues).
AFP - 2004.