Five Melbourne Rebels have been named for the Wallabies must-win clash against Wales in Lyon on Sunday night (local time).
Rebels Captain Rob Leota joins Andrew Kellaway in making their starting World Cup debuts, while hulking prop Pone Fa’amausili returns after fully recovering from a calf injury, named alongside Carter Gordon and Matt Philip.
Sitting third in the Pool with one win and one loss to start their World Cup campaign, the Test is seen as a must-win by Eddie Jones’ side.
Wallabies head coach Eddie Jones said: “Every team has matches like this during a Rugby World Cup and for this young team it is this week.”
“We’ve prepared well, are focused on what we need to do, and we’ll be ready to fight on Sunday night.”
An unchanged tight five, sees David Porecki captain the side for the second straight week, combining with 22-year-old Angus Bell and Test centurion James Slipper in the front row, with Nick Frost and Richie Arnold the locks. In the loose forwards, Rob Leota has been named at blindside flanker, with Tom Hooper shifting to openside and Rob Valetini at number eight.
Samu Kerevi and Jordan Petaia will continue to build on their partnership, selected to start in the midfield for the third straight week by Jones. Kellaway’s return to the side, in what will be his first appearance in the tournament, is the only change to the back three, with Marika Koroibete named on the left wing and Mark Nawaqanitawase to start on the right edge.
Matt Philip is set for more minutes as the finishing lock, with Fraser McReight swapping roles with Leota for the all important Test.
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Wallabies team to play Wales at OL Stadium, Lyon on Sunday 24 September, 9:00pm CET/5:00am Monday AEST
1. Angus Bell (26 Tests)
2. David Porecki (c) (17 Tests)
3. James Slipper (132 Tests)
4. Nick Frost (13 Tests)
5. Richie Arnold (7 Tests)
6. Rob Leota (19 Tests)
7. Tom Hooper (6 Tests)
8. Rob Valetini (37 Tests)
9. Tate McDermott (27 Tests)
10. Ben Donaldson (5 Tests)
11. Marika Koroibete (57 Tests)
12. Samu Kerevi (47 Tests)
13. Jordan Petaia (30 Tests)
14. Mark Nawaqanitawase (8 Tests)
15. Andrew Kellaway (24 Tests)
16. Matt Faessler (3 Tests)
17. Blake Schoupp (3 Tests)
18. Pone Fa’amausili (5 Tests)
19. Matt Philip (30 Tests)
20. Fraser McReight (15 Tests)
21. Nic White (65 Tests)
22. Carter Gordon (7 Tests)
23. Suliasi Vunivalu (5 Tests)