Sydney - Veteran prop Benn Robinson was on Tuesday recalled for the Wallabies'
Rugby Championship trip to South Africa and Argentina while James
Horwill was declared fit and named captain in place of Ben Mowen.
who played in the recent losing series against the British and Irish
Lions and is a veteran of 59 Tests, was the major omission in new coach
Ewen McKenzie's initial squad for the tournament.
But after the
team lost twice to New Zealand, once to South Africa and only scraped
home 14-13 against Argentina in Perth at the weekend, he has been
drafted in to stabilise Australia's shaky pack.
Reds pair Albert Anae and Chris Feauai-Sautia are the other
new inclusions in the 28-man squad,with Brumbies loosehead Scott Sio
and flank Liam Gill paying the price for the Wallabies' poor start to
Horwill, who has missed the past two Tests,
returns after a left hamstring strain, adding his size and nous to the
forward pack, along with Robinson. Horwill resumes the captaincy after
Mowen took charge on Saturday.
"James has been working hard in
rehab and is getting closer to a return while Benn has also impressed in
club rugby to earn himself another chance," McKenzie said.
"The scrums have been inconsistent across all the Tests so far and we are now about to embark on a tough two-game road tour.
want to improve this area of our game and when you combine the Tests
played between Ben and James we are bringing in another 99 games of
experience up front.
"That's invaluable when you are playing in hostile environments away from home."
currently playing for Bay of Plenty in New Zealand's ITM Cup, has been
added as the third hooker and can cover prop, while in the backs Joe
Tomane returns from a minor shoulder injury and joins exciting
19-year-old wing and centre Feauai-Sautia in the squad.
Their inclusion comes with outside backs Nick Cummins and Jesse Mogg both unavailable through injury.
will miss up to a month as he recovers from the broken hand sustained
in Australia's narrow win over Argentina, while Mogg will undergo a
complete shoulder construction and will be sidelined for six months.
Africa and Argentina are always brutal games, so you need to give an
edge to physicality in your selections," McKenzie said.
to fight fire with fire to some extent and it's pretty clear that we've
brought in added size as well as more experience for these next two
McKenzie said the tour of South Africa and Argentina would
be important in terms of building confidence and a winning mentality
within the group.
"I don't think anyone is going to back us to win
these next two games but there is a terrific opportunity to continue to
improve and surprise a few people," he said.
"There is a good vibe in the group at the moment with some emerging confidence and experience.
go over there with a strong mindset, the right attitude and with a
really good chance to finish positively in the competition."
Australia face South Africa in Cape Town on September 28 before playing Argentina in Rosario on October 5.Australia squad:
Ben Alexander, Sekope Kepu, Benn Robinson, James Slipper, Saia Fainga'a, Stephen Moore, Albert Anae, Kane Douglas, James Horwill (captain), Rob Simmons, Sitaleki Timani, Dave Dennis, Scott Fardy, Michael Hooper, Ben McCalman, Ben Mowen
Will Genia, Nic White, Quade Cooper, Bernard Foley, Matt Toomua, Adam Ashley-Cooper, Tevita Kuridrani, Christian Leali'ifano, James O'Connor, Chris Feauai-Sautia, Joe Tomane, Israel Folau