Some extra firepower has arrived for the Wallabies camp at Notre Dame University in the USA, with James Hanson and Sam Carter linking up with team mates following round two of the Buildcorp NRC.
“Sam Carter and myself got on a later flight on the Sunday which was delayed a bit so we missed a few connections and got in at 4.30am Monday morning,” Hanson said to ARU Media.
“It was into training at eight o’clock, which was good to cure the jetlag.”
Although not selected in the Wallabies Rugby World Cup squad, Hanson and Carter were called upon to train with the team as the side steps up its preparation for Australia’s first Rugby World Cup clash against Fiji on Wednesday 23 September.
“There is a specific role for these players heading over here to the US, which will assist our preparations for this Saturday's match and the Rugby World Cup,” said Cheika.
“It’s crucial we continue to improve as a collective and having Taqele, Sam and James here in the US allows them to stay connected to the group, and will help us throughout our preparation and training."
For Hanson though the trip to the US shows how close he is to the Wallabies World Cup group.
“It’s great to be over here and get into the mix,” Hanson said.
“My last game before the NRC was the last game of Super Rugby, so for me it was important to get some games under my belt.
“I had the opportunity to play for the Sydney Stars and it was great for game fitness and we were lucky enough to get some wins as well.
“I think he’s (Cheika’s) big message was purely to be ready. You wouldn’t wish it upon anyone but if injury does happen then I’ve got to be ready to slot straight in there.
“He’s big thing is that I’ve played under him before and he has confidence that if I do get the opportunity I’ll take it.
“It was extremely disappointing to miss out on the squad. I haven’t had the opportunity to be in a World Cup before, I was in the shadow squad in 2011.
“For me it was a goal of mine from the beginning of the year, I haven’t really given up on it.
“I’m still working as hard as I can so if the opportunity does arrive, I’m ready.”
The Wallabies are continuing to train at Notre Dame University, before their clash against the USA Eagles at 9:40am AEST this Sunday 6 September. The match will be broadcast LIVE on FOX SPORTS.