McCalman the Wallaby bolter

Thu, 18 Aug 2016 06:20
Large ben mccalman wallabies training 800

TEAM ANNOUNCEMENT: Coach Michael Cheika welcomed back 315 Tests of experience for Australia's Bledisloe Cup and 2016 Rugby Championship opener.

The overseas trio of Matt Giteau, Adam Ashley-Cooper and Will Genia return against New Zealand in Sydney on Saturday.

Cheika also made a key change in the forwards, choosing Ben McCalman at blindside flank instead of Scott Fardy for Saturday's Test which doubles as a Bledisloe Cup match.

France-based trio Ashley-Cooper, Giteau and Genia along with lock Kane Douglas return after missing the home series clean sweep loss against England in June.

McCalman joins Michael Hooper and David Pocock in a new-look back row with Fardy named among the reserves, while old combinations will be reunited in the backline with Genia and Bernard Foley forming the halves alongside Giteau and Tevita Kuridrani in the centres.

Brumbies prop Allan Ala'alatoa is in line to make his debut after being on the bench alongside veterans Tatafu Polota-Nau and James Slipper.

Western Force outside back Dane Haylett-Petty retained his place on the wing after playing in the England series, with vice-captain Rob Horne relegated to the replacements.

Captain and hooker Stephen Moore will line up for his 106th Test appearance at the Sydney Olympic stadium, while wing Ashley-Cooper is set to play his 115th international.

The Wallabies are the defending Rugby Championship title holders, but have won just one of their last 13 encounters against the world champions.

Australia have not held the Bledisloe Cup since 2002, with the All Blacks keeping the trophy 13 times since then.

Australia: 15 Israel Folau, 14 Adam Ashley-Cooper, 13 Tevita Kuridrani, 12 Matt Giteau, 11 Dane Haylett-Petty, 10 Bernard Foley, 9 Will Genia, 8 David Pocock, 7 Michael Hooper, 6 Ben McCalman, 5 Rob Simmons, 4 Kane Douglas, 3 Sekope Kepu, 2 Stephen Moore (captain), 1 Scott Sio.
Replacements: 16 Tatafu Polota-Nau, 17 James Slipper, 18 Allan Ala'alatoa, 19 Dean Mumm, 20 Scott Fardy, 21 Nick Phipps, 22 Matt Toomua, 23 Rob Horne.

Date: Saturday, August 20
Venue: ANZ Stadium, Sydney
Kick-off: 20.05 (22.05 NZST, 10.05 GMT)
Referee: Jaco Peyper (South Africa)
Assistant referees: Romain Poite (France), Federico Anselmi (Argentina)
TMO: Shaun Veldsman (South Africa)

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FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Sun, 23 April 2017
Clermont Auvergne v Leinster 14h00 Paris
Fri, 28 April 2017
Ospreys v Ulster 22h00 Liberty Stadium
Cardiff Blues v Zebre 22h00 BT Sport Cardiff Arms Park
Connacht v Scarlets 22h00 Sportsground
Edinburgh v Dragons 22h00 Myreside
Leinster v Glasgow Warriors 22h00 RDS Arena
Treviso v Munster 22h00 Stadio Monigo
Highlanders v Stormers 07h35 Dunedin
Newcastle Falcons v Worcester Warriors 19h00 Kingston Park
Sat, 29 April 2017
Chiefs v Sunwolves 07h35 Hamilton
Reds v Waratahs 09h45 Suncorp Stadium
Force v Lions 11h55 Perth
Bath v Gloucester 14h00 Recreation Ground
Leicester Tigers v Sale Sharks 14h00 Welford Road
Exeter Chiefs v Northampton Saints 14h00 Sandy Park
Saracens v Bristol 14h00 Allianz Park
Harlequins v Wasps 14h00 Twickenham Stoop
Cheetahs v Crusaders 15h15 Bloemfontein
Kings v Rebels 17h30 Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium
Jaguares v Sharks 19h40 Buenos Aires
RESULT SCORE
Sat, 22 April 2017
Sharks v Rebels 9 | 9
Bulls v Cheetahs 20 | 14
Munster v Saracens 10 | 26
Force v Chiefs 7 | 16
Crusaders v Stormers 57 | 24
Highlanders v Sunwolves 40 | 15
Fri, 21 April 2017
Lions v Jaguares 24 | 21
Waratahs v Kings 24 | 26
Hurricanes v Brumbies 56 | 21
Mon, 17 April 2017
UP-Tuks v Maties 28 | 21
Sun, 16 April 2017
Northampton Saints v Saracens 25 | 27
Bristol v Wasps 21 | 36
Sat, 15 April 2017
Connacht v Leinster 24 | 37
Treviso v Edinburgh 21 | 6
Bulls v Jaguares 26 | 13
RUGBY CHAMPIONSHIP
MORE LOGS
Team P W D L Pts
New Zealand 6 6 0 0 30
Australia 6 3 0 3 14
South Africa 6 2 0 4 10
Argentina 6 1 0 5 5