Australia have confirmed an unchanged starting XV for their second Rugby Championship Test against South Africa in Sydney on Saturday.
It is the first time head coach Dave Rennie has done this since starting his reign in 2020 with his predecessor, Michael Cheika, being the last coach to keep the faith in the Wallabies’ first two Tests against Ireland in 2018.
There is only one alteration to the matchday squad with scrum-half Jake Gordon replacing Tate McDermott as Nic White’s back-up.
Star left wing Marika Koroibete is the only player left from that encounter and he partners Tom Wright (right wing) and Reece Hodge (full-back) in the back three for this weekend’s Allianz Stadium encounter.
Stand-in captain James Slipper (loosehead prop) makes his 121st appearance for Australia which means he draws level with Adam Ashley-Cooper and Michael Hooper, the man he replaced as the side’s skipper.
“It’s great to be able to have some consistency in selection with the team that played last week earning the right to wear the jersey again in Sydney,” Rennie said in a statement.
Preparing for a tough challenge
“While rapt with last week’s effort, we’re well aware of the challenge a wounded Springbok poses and the intensity we will require again on Saturday night.”
Rennie has once again opted for a six/two, forwards/backs split on his replacements bench. The Test will be the first international event a revamped stadium in front of a capacity crowd of 42,500 spectators.
“We’re excited by the opportunity to play in front of a sold out crowd in the first international event at the new Allianz Stadium,” Rennie added.
Australia: 15 Reece Hodge, 14 Tom Wright, 13 Len Ikitau, 12 Hunter Paisami, 11 Marika Koroibete, 10 Noah Lolesio, 9 Nic White, 8 Rob Valetini, 7 Fraser McReight, 6 Jed Holloway, 5 Matt Philip, 4 Rory Arnold, 3 Allan Alaalatoa, 2 Folau Fainga’a, 1 James Slipper (c)
Replacements: 16 David Porecki, 17 Scott Sio, 18 Taniela Tupou, 19 Darcy Swain, 20 Rob Leota, 21 Pete Samu, 22 Jake Gordon, 23 Andrew Kellaway
Date: Saturday, September 3
Venue: Allianz Stadium, Sydney
Kick-off: 19:35 local (10:35 BST, 09:35 GMT)
Referee: Ben O’Keeffe (New Zealand)
Assistant Referees: Paul Williams (New Zealand), Tual Trainini (France)
TMO: Brendon Pickerill (New Zealand)
READ MORE: South Africa: Damian Willemse starts at 10, Canan Moodie to make debut for Springboks
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