Rugby

Pocock returns, Genia out of Wallaby squad

2016-10-14 10:01
David Pocock (Gallo)

Sydney - The Wallabies will be without experienced scrumhalf Will Genia for their final Bledisloe Cup Test against New Zealand in Auckland later this month.

Genia's name was missing when coach Michael Cheika named a 31-man squad on Friday for the third clash of the season against the All Blacks.

Genia, who has been one of the Wallabies' leading lights this year, was required by his French club Stade Francais.

The Auckland match falls outside the international window in which nations have access to their overseas-based players.

"As much as I'd like to have him, no complaints from my end - they are totally within their rights to ask for the player back," Cheika said.

"Genia has been really good. He's been in some of the best form he's had in an Australian jersey.

"He's been really instrumental for the team as a whole and he's one of the senior players we do have, but it's a great opportunity for Nick Phipps to get back out there and stake a claim for the jersey."

Cheika has not given up hope on injured back-rowers David Pocock and Sean McMahon playing at Eden Park.

Pocock (broken hand) and McMahon (ankle) were named in the extended squad for the game on October 22.

Pocock hasn't played since the Argentina Test in Perth last month, with fellow No 8 McMahon injured a week later in Pretoria.

"There's a chance Pocock could be available for this game, McMahon probably a little less," Cheika said.

Giant lock Will Skelton has also been recalled to the squad.

Cheika said the Wallabies faced a considerable challenge against the All Blacks, who are chasing a record straight 18th Test win.

"We understand how big the gap has been between a victory for Australia at Eden Park," said Cheika.

"And we know we're going to have to be at our best. You're going to have to play the best football of your life to get a result there." 

The Wallabies have not beaten New Zealand in Auckland since 1986.

Australia squad:

Forwards

Allan Alaalatoa, Rory Arnold, Adam Coleman, Kane Douglas, Scott Fardy, James Hanson, Michael Hooper, Sekope Kepu, Tolu Latu, Stephen Moore, Sean McMahon, Dean Mumm, David Pocock, Tom Robertson, Rob Simmons, Scott Sio, Will Skelton, James Slipper, Lopeti Timani

Backs

Quade Cooper, Israel Folau, Bernard Foley, Nick Frisby, Dane Haylett-Petty, Reece Hodge, Samu Kerevi, Tevita Kuridrani, Luke Morahan, Sefanaia Naivalu, Nick Phipps, Henry Speight

Read more on:    wallabies  |  david pocock  |  rugby
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