Sunday 16 December 2018

Michael Cheika names two new caps in strong Australia team to face Ireland

Israel Folau
Israel Folau

Michael Cheika has named two uncapped players in his Australia side for Saturday's first test against Ireland in Brisbane.

Hooker Brandon Paenga-Amosa and number eight Caleb Timu will pull on the Wallabies jersey for the first time in what is a strong team selection from Cheika has he looks to beat Ireland for the first time in his tenure.

Timu completes a very strong back row, with captain Michael Hooper at openside flanker joined by breakdown specialist David Pocock at blindside.

The backline is littered with in-form players such as play-makers Bernard Foley and Kurtley Beale at out-half and inside centre respectively, while the sensational Israel Folau is named at fullback.

Ireland have won the last two meetings between the sides, both at the Aviva Stadium, but haven't beaten the Wallabies in Australia since the victorious test series of 1979.

The first test kicks off at 11am on Saturday.

Australia: 15 Israel Folau, 14 Marika Koroibete, 13 Samu Kerevi, 12 Kurtley Beale, 11 Dane Haylett-Petty, 10 Bernard Foley, 9 Will Genia, 8 Caleb Timu, 7 Michael Hooper (c), 6 David Pocock, 5 Adam Coleman, 4 Izack Rodda, 3 Sekope Kepu, 2 Brandon Paenga-Amosa, 1 Scott Sio

Replacements: 16 Tolu Latu, 17 Allan Alaalatoa, 18 Taniela Tupou, 19 Rob Simmons, 20 Lukhan Tui, 21 Pete Samu, 22 Nick Phipps, 23 Reece Hodge

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