Cooper, Genia to face Boks

2011-07-19 07:00

Sydney - Inspirational halfbacks Quade Cooper and Will Genia have been restored to Australia's line-up for Saturday's Tri-Nations opener against South Africa as the Wallabies look to put their shock defeat to Samoa behind them.

Flyhalf Cooper was rested and scrumhalf Genia benched for last weekend's 32-23 upset in Sydney after helping the Reds to the Super rugby title the previous weekend.

With openside flank David Pocock and wing James O'Connor also back in the team after recovering from foot and hamstring injuries respectively, coach Robbie Deans said the side was the strongest he had available.

"Hopefully (Cooper and Genia) will click back into gear," the New Zealander told reporters. "They enjoy playing together and other players enjoy playing with them.

"It all comes down to what we do. We've had that jolt, but you can't presume that we're going to better for that."

Kurtley Beale, who kicked the long-range penalty to secure Australia a 41-39 victory in their most recent meeting with the Springboks last year in Bloemfontein, returns to the starting line-up at fullback.

If Australia's confidence has been dented by the Samoa embarrassment, it was not evident when Cooper, O'Connor and Beale faced the media at the team's training camp.

The trio exchanged banter about who would have the kicking duties - O'Connor has been given the nod - and gave every impression of being relaxed and excited about the challenge ahead.

"For us, we're looking forward," O'Connor said. "South Africa have got a lot of depth and that's where our head's at."

Deans also elected to start Reds second row pairing of James Horwill and Rob Simmons, while Digby Ioane retains his place on the left wing outside centres Pat McCabe and Adam Ashley-Cooper.

The Faingaa brothers, hooker Saia and centre Anthony, were named on the bench along with back rower Scott Higginbotham to boost the Reds's contingent in the 22 to eight.

Matt Giteau, who started at flyhalf against Samoa, was omitted altogether with Deans relying on the ability of Beale and O'Connor to take the playmaker role if necessary.

Deans dismissed any thoughts that the Springboks, who left 21 frontline players behind in South Africa, might present a weaker challenge than usual and Beale concurred.

"We learned a lesson at the weekend," Beale said. "We just can't take teams lightly and this is a good opportunity to redeem ourselves."


Wallabies: 15 Kurtley Beale, 14 James O'Connor, 13 Adam Ashley-Cooper, 12 Pat McCabe, 11 Digby Ioane, 10 Quade Cooper, 9 Will Genia, 8 Ben McCalman, 7 David Pocock, 6 Rocky Elsom, 5 James Horwill, 4 Rob Simmons, 3 Ben Alexander, 2 Stephen Moore, 1 Sekope Kepu

Substitutes: 16 Saia Faingaa, 17 Pek Cowan, 18 Nathan Sharpe, 19 Matt Hodgson, 20 Scott Higginbotham, 21 Nick Phipps, 22 Anthony Faingaa

Springboks: 15 Gio Aplon, 14 Bjorn Basson, 13 Juan de Jongh, 12 Wynand Olivier, 11 Lwazi Mvovo, 10 Morne Steyn, 9 Ruan Pienaar, 8 Ashley Johnson, 7 Danie Rossouw, 6 Deon Stegmann, 5 Johann Muller, 4 Flip van der Merwe, 3 Werner Kruger, 2 John Smit, 1 Dean Greyling

Substitutes: 16 Chiliboy Ralepelle, 17 CJ van der Linde, 18 Alistair Hargreaves, 19 Jean Deysel, 20 Charl McLeod, 21 Adrian Jacobs, 22 Patrick Lambie


  • Hein - 2011-07-19 07:30

    Go Bokke!!! Show these arrogant show ponies how this game should be played.

  • Jacques v Schalkwyk - 2011-07-19 07:36

    Great back three and outside centre, just sad they won't see the ball with Sunshine wearing the nr.12 jumper...

  • Crusaderinvader - 2011-07-19 07:43

    This is a massive test for Deans. If a full strength wallabies team goes down to a second string boks team at home then the aussie media will indeed ask some searching questions. Getting a bit sick and tired of Deans rhetoric at the mo, sounds a lot like John Mitchell, says plenty without revealing anything informative.

      Rob van den Heuvel - 2011-07-20 10:35

      Catch 22 for Mr Deans, this could backfire in a big way - due to their performance against Samo he is forced to play his first choice side, problem is - what if they loose to the Boks, even worse what if someone like Cooper or Genia pick up an injury. I think Mr Deans is a very worried man, they dont even have Mr Murdock to swing his weight around Sanzar anymore - oops!

  • Dwerg - 2011-07-19 07:49

    Aus have the upper hand in the backline and loose trio. I don't rate Stegmann at all - he'll be conceding 4 penalties. I'm keen to see the front rows have it out, though. Aus by 5

      MB1810 - 2011-07-19 10:52

      I know its a newbie front row for SA, but I think they might just get the best of the Aussies, it will be very interesting to watch. I agree that our loosies will come in second, I think Johnson at 8 is a mistake, I would have liked him and Rossouw to exchange places and Stegman should be watching this game from home. Keegan Daniel, light as he is, might have been a better option. I think the backline can be very explosive on attack, but more importantly, will they be able to contain the likes of Beale and Digby Ioane. Also expecting the Boks to loose a pretty close game, but seriously hoping I'm wrong.

  • Makutu - 2011-07-19 08:37

    I'm glad Ben Tapuai is not picked. At least the Bokke will have a good game here! Nice team though.

  • Louw - 2011-07-19 09:30

    Die voorry behoort hulle man te staan. Twee slotte behoort ook goed te doen. Dan begin die probleme. Geen oopkant flank nie.Drie stadige loosie.Hulle gaan nie by die afbreekpinte uitkom nie en daar gaan ons baie balle verloor. Stegman te veel stafskoppe en geelkaart moontlikheid. Skakelpaar hopeloos te stadig en M Steyn kan nie game dikteer nie het in super 15 gewys. Senters sal baie moet verdedig gaan nie baie bal kry nie. Vleuels goed op aanval maar hoopeloos op verdediging. Gaan geslag word.Nr 15 gaan baie hoeballe kry en hoop hy kan sy man staan. Dus ons soek n oopkant flank n losskakel wat die game kan lees en vleuels wat kan verdedig ook.

      Kleinboet - 2011-07-19 21:41

      Louw, lyk my jy soek 'n totaal nuwe span! Moenie so terneergedruk wees nie, broer! Gee die manne 'n kans om te wys van watter stoffasie hulle gemaak is. Ek persoonlik hoop hulle speel almal hulle harte uit en maak ons trots.

  • Marcus - 2011-07-19 10:04

    No question that the Boks will win this one!

  • Marcus - 2011-07-19 10:04

    No question that the Boks will win this one!

  • Hannes van der Linde - 2011-07-19 10:35

    Wynand.... PASS!!! The rest of the team looks competent. Would have played Danie at lock and Deysel instead of Stegman because he gave away a hell of a lot of penalties in the S15. Strong front row, Werner Kruger has been impressive. Venomous back three! GO BOKKE!!!

      Manus - 2011-07-19 13:24

      Stem saam: lekker twee stutte. En ek hoop John Smit maak my en al die ander wat dink hy's oor die muur se naam krater!

      Hannes van der Linde - 2011-07-22 07:07

      Ons kan net hoop. lol

  • Owentjie - 2011-07-21 15:50

    I dont see how resting aus players for Samoa clash is any different than resting sa players for Aus test? Or Tri nations. Every team has different goals and objectives, The Boks priority is the world cup, we dont care about anyting but the big prize!

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