Cape Town - Australia have made three changes to their starting line-up for Saturday's clash with South Africa in Cape Town.
the backs, Adam Ashley-Cooper and Joe Tomane replace Peter Betham and
Rob Horne as the starting wings while up front, Saia Fainga'a is
preferred to James Hanson as the injured Tatafu Polota-Nau's replacement
On the replacements bench, there's also a recall for Benn Robinson who replaces Pek Cowan as the back-up prop.
Ewen McKenzie has also dropped Matt Hodgson from his matchday squad to
revert to a more traditional four/three (forwards/backs) split on his
bench, which means that Rob Horne joins Nic White and Kurtley Beale as
Tomane will make his first appearance for the Wallabies since their 30-26 victory over Wales in Cardiff last year.
former NRL player has been sidelined for most of this season with a
hamstring injury but joined the Wallaby squad on the Gold Coast two
"We've been impressed by how Rob Horne has performed
on the wing, but we feel Joe deserves an opportunity to also show us
what he has got," said McKenzie.
"You can never have enough big
backs in your side, and the physicality he brings to the game should
serve us well against an abrasive Springboks line-up.
to add Adam [Ashley-Cooper's] experience to the squad and we expect him
to be refreshed and ready to go after missing our most recent Test
In the forwards, Fainga'a's superior
set-piece play sees him edging out Hanson, who was in the Wallabies'
run-on side in their 24-23 victory over the Springboks in Perth earlier
Robinson's elevation to the bench also puts him in
line for his first appearance of the year while Ben McCalman makes his
second start at number eight after taking over from the injured Wycliff
Palu a fortnight ago against Argentina on the Gold Coast.
set-piece is always an important area of focus for us, even more so when
you play South Africa, and we know the outcome of the scrum and
line-out will be crucial to the final result," added McKenzie.
recognise that, and are confident the inclusion of Saia and Benn will
offer us the best outcome in this area across the entire 80 minutes.
"They're both experienced campaigners who have delivered at a high level before, and we expect the same on Saturday night.
Saia, we've been really impressed with the effort he has put in off the
field recently, and he'll be determined to make the most of this
"Benn is someone who we have always said wasn't out
of the selection picture, and we've been pleased with the improvements
he has made to his game throughout the year.
"We liked what we saw from him at training during the lead-up to the Gold Coast test and he now gets his chance."
15 Willie le Roux, 14 Cornal Hendricks, 13 Jan Serfontein, 12 Jean de Villiers (captain), 11 Bryan Habana, 10 Handre Pollard, 9 Francois Hougaard, 8 Duane Vermeulen, 7 Teboho Mohoje, 6 Marcell Coetzee, 5 Victor Matfield, 4 Eben Etzebeth, 3 Jannie du Plessis, 2 Adriaan Strauss, 1 Tendai Mtawarira
Substitutes: 16 Bismarck du Plessis, 17 Trevor Nyakane, 18 Marcel van der Merwe, 19 Bakkies Botha, 20 Schalk Burger, 21 Cobus Reinach, 22 Pat Lambie, 23 JP Pietersen
15 Israel Folau, 14 Adam Ashley-Cooper, 13 Tevita Kuridrani, 12 Matt Toomua, 11 Joe Tomane, 10 Bernard Foley, 9 Nick Phipps, 8 Ben McCalman, 7 Michael Hooper (captain), 6 Scott Fardy, 5 Rob Simmons, 4 Sam Carter, 3 Sekope Kepu, 2 Saia Fainga’a, 1 James Slipper.
Substitutes: 16 James Hanson, 17 Benn Robinson, 18 Ben Alexander, 19 James Horwill, 20 Scott Higginbotham, 21 Nic White, 22 Kurtley Beale, 23 Rob Horne