Wallaby door opened for Simmons

Thu, 15 Sep 2016 07:55

TEAM ANNOUNCEMENT: Australia coach Michael Cheika named his sixth different lock combination of the year on Thursday.

Cheika recalled Rob Simmons for the Rugby Championship Test against Argentina in Perth on Saturday.

Simmons, the only change to the starting side from last week's much-needed win over South Africa, will partner Adam Coleman in the line-outs, with Kane Douglas making way.

Simmons, who will play his 64th Test, has not featured since the Wallabies were hammered 42-8 by the All Blacks in Sydney on August 20.

The 27-year old will partner Adam Coleman in the second row.

Coleman and fellow Western Force star Dane Haylett-Petty will get the chance to run out in front of their home crowd, while Reece Hodge retains his spot on the wing after an impressive run-on debut last weekend.

Waratahs prop Tom Robertson could be in line to become the eighth Wallaby debutant this season after he was named on an extended bench.

Melbourne Rebels' back row forward Lopeti Timani was again named in the extended reserves list after being omitted from last week's Springbok Test, with the final bench to be named after Friday's training.

Wing Henry Speight was also named on the provisional bench and he could be set for his first Test since facing Uruguay at the 2015 Rugby World Cup.

Reece Hodge retains his spot on the wing after an impressive run-on debut last weekend.

Australia fought back from 3-14 down to beat South Africa 23-17 for their first win of the year, ending a demoralising sequence of six straight defeats.

After losing the World Cup final to New Zealand last October, Australia suffered three defeats to England and two big losses to the rampant All Blacks this year before finally breaking through.

Australia: 15 Israel Folau, 14 Dane Haylett-Petty, 13 Samu Kerevi, 12 Bernard Foley, 11 Reece Hodge, 10 Quade Cooper, 9 Will Genia, 8 David Pocock, 7 Michael Hooper, 6 Dean Mumm, 5 Adam Coleman, 4 Rob Simmons, 3 Sekope Kepu, 2 Stephen Moore (captain), 1 Scott Sio.
Replacements - from: Tatafu Polota-Nau, James Slipper, Tom Robertson, Rory Arnold, Lopeti Timani, Sean McMahon, Nick Phipps, Tevita Kuridrani, Henry Speight.

Date: Saturday, September 17
Venue: nib Stadium, Perth
Kick-off: 18.05 (20.05 AEST; 07.05 Argentina time; 10.05 GMT)
Referee: Wayne Barnes (England)
Assistant referees: Nigel Owens (Wales), Nick Briant (New Zealand)
TMO: Ben Skeen (New Zealand)

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