Thursday 8 December 2016

Australia recall big guns Israel Folau and Michael Hooper for Ireland clash

Published 24/11/2016 | 13:18

Israel Folau of Austraila during their rugby squad training session at the RDS Arena, Ballsbridge, Dublin. Photo by Seb Daly/Sportsfile
Israel Folau of Austraila during their rugby squad training session at the RDS Arena, Ballsbridge, Dublin. Photo by Seb Daly/Sportsfile

Michael Cheika has named a very strong starting XV for Australia's clash with Ireland at the Aviva on Saturday.

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Israel Folau returns at full-back and Michael Hooper takes his place at openside flanker.

The Wallabies are also boosted by the return of Sekope Kepu, Rory Arnold, Reece Hodge, Dane Haylett-Petty and Lopeti Timani.

If Australia are victorious over the Ireland on Saturday evening and beat Eddie Jones' England in their final game, they will have completed their first Grand Slam of the Home Nations since 1984.

Australia team to play Ireland: (15-9) Israel Folau, Dane Haylett-Petty, Tevita Kuridrani, Reece Hodge, Henry Speight, Bernard Foley, Will Genia; (1-8) Scott Sio, Stephen Moore, Sekope Kepu, Rory Arnold, Rob Simmons, Dean Mumm, Michael Hooper, David Pocock.

Replacements: (One player to be omitted) (16-23) Tolu Latu, James Slipper, Allan Alaalatoa, Kane Douglas, Lopeti Timani, Sean McMahon, Nick Phipps, Quade Cooper, Sefanaia Naivalu

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