Rugby

Hook eyes starting line-up

2012-06-13 07:45
James Hook (AFP)

Sydney - Wales flyhalf James Hook has put his hand up for a starting spot in Saturday's second Test against Australia by scoring a try in a bright performance in a tour match against the Brumbies.

Hook came off the bench to win his 64th cap at fullback in the 27-19 loss to the Wallabies in Brisbane last week and would have been hopeful of an elevation to the starting line-up after Rhys Priestland's disappointing display in the number 10 shirt.

On a cool Tuesday evening in Canberra, Hook, who turns 27 later this month, did his cause no harm by crashing over for his country's first try as well as setting free his backline with some fine long passing in the 25-15 victory.

Rob Howley, caretaker coach in place of the injured Warren Gatland, will name his team for the second Test on Thursday and said several performances had given him food for thought.

"We always have headaches," Howley told reporters. "We've got two packs that can go head-to-head and it's great to have those decisions to be made and they'll be made over the next 48 hours."

Another player who did his chances of starting in Melbourne on Saturday no harm was lock Alun Wyn Jones, who captained the Wales side against the Brumbies second string and also scored a try before being replaced at halftime.

Wales have not won a Test in Australia for 43 years and play a third Test against the Wallabies in Sydney on June 23.

Read more on:    james hook  |  rugby
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