Blake blow to Wobblies
12 Jul 2006
Rodzilla won’t face the Boks on Saturday, but Rattlebones has made a surprisingly quick return to the Australian match 22.
Rodney Blake, dubbed Rodzilla because of his 130 kilogram frame, was seen to be the answer to the Wallabies front row wobbles, but he failed a fitness test and coach John Connolly has been forced to retain the loosehead and tighthead combination that provided the All Blacks with a scrum feast in Christchurch. The only change to the front row is forced through injury as Jeremy Paul returns.
Mat Giteau starts at inside centre ahead of Mat Rogers in the only change to the backline, while Clyde Rathbone is included in the match 22 after initially being ruled out of rugby for six weeks with a hamstring strain.
Connolly told the media Mat Rogers was unluckly to miss out, but that Giteau was due a start. He also said Scott Fava had played consistently well this season and he was confident he would add something different to the loose-trio.
Fava will play at No 8 and Mark Chisolm drops to the subs bench.
Australia: Chris Latham, Mark Gerrard, Stirling Mortlock, Matt Giteau, Lote Tuqiri, Stephen Larkham, George Gregan (capt); Scott Fava, George Smith, Rocky Elsom, Dan Vickerman, Nathan Sharpe, Guy Shepherdson, Jeremy Paul, Greg Holmes. Subs: Sean Hardman, Al Baxter, Mark Chisholm, Phil Waugh, Sam Cordingley, Mat Rogers and Clyde Rathbone.