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Wallabies squad announced for Castrol EDGE Rugby Championship

  
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7/26/2013


Australian Rugby Union today launched The Castrol EDGE Rugby Championship with the announcement of an extended 40-man Qantas Wallabies training squad.
 
The selected players will assemble for a five-day training camp in Sydney on Monday 5 August , giving new Qantas Wallabies coach Ewen McKenzie an opportunity to assess his options before announcing a final squad of up to 30 players on Friday 9 August.
 
McKenzie has deliberately cast a wide net in selecting his inaugural 40-man training squad with 10 uncapped players included for the opening week of camp.
 
They will join an experienced core of players who will all be vying for selection in Australia’s opening Bledisloe Cup and Castrol EDGE Rugby Championship clash with New Zealand at ANZ Stadium in Sydney on Saturday 17 August.
 
“At this stage it’s important that as many players as possible gain exposure to our program and that everyone is receiving an opportunity to push their case for selection before we narrow down our squad,” McKenzie said.
 
“The first five days will be invaluable in this respect as there are some players I know very well and others that I’m interested in learning more about.
 
“What I do know though, as is evidenced by the fact that we’ve chosen 10 uncapped players for the training camp, is that Australian Rugby does have a lot of depth and talent coming through, now and for the future.
 
“We’ve taken that very much into consideration with our selections and believe this squad is capable of having success right now, while also expediting the development process for some of the younger guys who we see as having the potential to represent Australia in a few years.”
 
Long-serving lock James Horwill will captain the Qantas Wallabies squad, which also includes 21 players who earned at least one cap during Australia’s recent three-game Test series against the British & Irish Lions.
 
Of the omissions from the British & Irish Lions series, Kurtley Beale and Wycliff Palu have not been considered for selection due to injury, joining Qantas Wallabies regulars David Pocock, Digby Ioane, Pat McCabe and Scott Higginbotham on the sideline.
 
Beale is set to undergo surgery on his shoulder later this week and will be sidelined for the remainder of the 2013 season, while Palu will be unavailable during the early stages of Australia’s campaign as he continues rehabilitation from surgery to repair damaged meniscus in a knee.
 
Reds’ winger Rod Davies, Western Force centre Kyle Godwin and Waratahs’ wingers Cam Crawford are also unavailable for selection due to injury.
 
In finalising his initial 40-man squad, McKenzie has also given priority to players who are committed to Australian Rugby in 2014 and beyond, with many tough selection decisions favouring those players available for Qantas Wallabies selection in years to come.
 
“We’ve assessed each case on its own merits, but it’s important that we are, where possible, making investments in players that are going to provide value for Australian Rugby over the next few seasons,” McKenzie said.
 
“That was definitely a major consideration in selecting this training squad.
 
“With new systems to install, we’ve also put a lot of weight on those players who are healthy and able to contribute fully in training in the lead-up to our opening two Tests.
 
“There is only a very short period before our first match, so it’s paramount that the players are in a strong position mentally and physically to be investing all their time now into understanding what we are trying to achieve.
 
“We’re also trying to develop strong combinations and competition across all positions and you can only do that by having players who are available to train and compete.”
 
The Qantas Wallabies will have just a fortnight to prepare for their opening game against the All Blacks, where a victory could prove decisive in Australia’s quest to win the Bledisloe Cup for the first time since 2002.
 
The following week in Wellington an opportunity also exists for the Qantas Wallabies to snap a 12-year losing drought against the All Blacks in New Zealand, with Australia’s last victory coming at Dunedin in 2001.
 
“It’s always going to be challenging when you come up against the number one team in the world, but it also gives you the greatest opportunity to make a statement,” McKenzie said.
 
“If we want to change where we are in the Rugby landscape, this is a great place to start.  Effectively, the Bledisloe Cup is there for the taking if we are good enough over two weekends.
 
“We’ll have some different thoughts and ideas about how we go about it.  The reality is we’ve got to challenge ourselves to do things differently otherwise the outcomes will remain the same.
 
“We’ll be able to go into that first game in our own backyard, in front of a full house, with some element of surprise. I don’t think that’s a bad situation.”
 
Tickets for the Qantas Wallabies clash against the All Blacks at ANZ Stadium on Saturday 17 August are on sale now via www.ticketek.com.au

The Qantas Wallabies 40-man training squad to assemble in Sydney on 5 August ahead of The Castrol EDGE Rugby Championship is:

Player

Position

State

Age

Test Caps

Ben Alexander

Prop

ACT Brumbies

28

51

Adam Ashley-Cooper

Centre

NSW Waratahs

29

80

Peter Betham

Wing

NSW Waratahs

24

Uncapped

Quade Cooper

Flyhalf

Queensland Reds

25

38

Nick Cummins

Wing

Western Force

25

6

Dave Dennis

Backrow

NSW Waratahs

27

15

Kane Douglas

Lock

NSW Waratahs

24

9

Anthony Fainga’a

Centre

Queensland Reds

26

23

Saia Fainga’a

Hooker

Queensland Reds

26

19

Scott Fardy

Lock/Backrow

ACT Brumbies

29

Uncapped

Chris Feauai-Sautia

Wing/Centre

Queensland Reds

19

Uncapped

Israel Folau

Wing/Fullback

NSW Waratahs

24

3

Bernard Foley

Flyhalf

NSW Waratahs

23

Uncapped

Will Genia

Scrumhalf

Queensland Reds

25

44

Liam Gill

Backrow

Queensland Reds

21

10

Mike Harris

Centre/Flyhalf

Queensland Reds

25

8

Michael Hooper

Backrow

NSW Waratahs

21

16

James Horwill

Lock

Queensland Reds

28

38

Sekope Kepu

Prop

NSW Waratahs

27

26

Peter Kimlin

Backrow/Lock

ACT Brumbies

28

2

Tevita Kuridrani

Centre

ACT Brumbies

22

Uncapped

Christian Leali’ifano

Centre

ACT Brumbies

25

3

Ben McCalman

Loose Forward

Western Force

25

22

Hugh McMeniman

Backrow/Lock

Western Force

29

21

Jesse Mogg

Fullback

ACT Brumbies

24

1

Stephen Moore

Hooker

ACT Brumbies

30

79

Ben Mowen

Backrow

ACT Brumbies

28

3

James O’Connor

Wing/Fullback

Melbourne Rebels

23

40

Nick Phipps

Scumhalf

Melbourne Rebels

24

14

Tatafu Polota Nau

Hooker

NSW Waratahs

27

44

Hugh Pyle

Lock

Melbourne Rebels

24

Uncapped

Benn Robinson

Prop

NSW Waratahs

29

59

Paddy Ryan

Prop

NSW Waratahs

24

1

Jake Schatz

Backrow

Queensland Reds

23

Uncapped

Rob Simmons

Lock

Queensland Reds

24

26

Scott Sio

Prop

ACT Brumbies

21

Uncapped

James Slipper

Prop

Queensland Reds

24

37

Joe Tomane

Wing

ACT Brumbies

23

3

Matt Toomua

Flyhalf

ACT Brumbies

23

Uncapped

Nic White

Scrumhalf

ACT Brumbies

23

Uncapped


THE CASTROL EDGE RUGBY CHAMPIONSHIP DRAW

DATE

TEST

LOCATION

Saturday 17 August, 2013

Qantas Wallabies

v

All Blacks

ANZ Stadium, Sydney

Saturday 7 September, 2013

Qantas Wallabies

v

Springboks

Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane

Saturday 14 September, 2013

Qantas Wallabies

v

Pumas

Patersons Stadium, Perth

 

THE COMPLETE RUGBY CHAMPIONSHIP DRAW

DATE

TEST

LOCATION

ROUND 1

Saturday 17 August, 2013

Qantas Wallabies

v

All Blacks

ANZ Stadium, Sydney

Saturday 17 August, 2013

(Sunday 18 August, 2013 AEDT)

Springboks

v

Pumas

Free State Stadium, Bloemfontein

ROUND 2

Saturday 24 August, 2013

All Blacks

v

Qantas Wallabies

Westpac Stadium, Wellington

Saturday 24 August, 2013 (Sunday 25 August, 2013 AEDT)

Pumas

v

Springboks

Estadio Malvinas Argentinas, Mendoza

Saturday 31 August, 2013

BYE WEEK

ROUND 3

Saturday 7 September, 2013

Qantas Wallabies

v

Springboks

Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane

Saturday 7 September, 2013

All Blacks

v

Pumas

Waikato Stadium, Hamilton

ROUND 4

Saturday 14 September, 2013

Qantas Wallabies

v

Pumas

Patersons Stadium, Perth

Saturday 14 September, 2013

All Blacks

v

Springboks

Eden Park, Auckland

Saturday 21 September, 2013

BYE WEEK

ROUND 5

Saturday 28 September, 2013

(Sunday 29 September, 2013 AEDT)

Springboks

v

Qantas Wallabies

DHL Newlands Stadium, Cape Town

Saturday 28 September, 2013

(Sunday 29 September, 2013 AEDT)

Pumas

v

All Blacks

Estadio Ciudad de La Plata, La Plata

ROUND 6

Saturday 5 October, 2013

(Sunday 6 October, 2013 AEDT)

Springboks

v

All Blacks

Coca-Cola Park, Johannesburg

Saturday 5 October, 2013

(Sunday 6 October, 2013 AEDT)

Pumas

v

Qantas Wallabies

Estadio Gigante de Arroyito, Rosario

 THIRD AND FINAL BLEDISLOE CUP TEST

DATE

TEST

LOCATION

Saturday 19 October, 2013

All Blacks

v

Qantas Wallabies

Dunedin, New Zealand