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Wallabies RWC squad announced



Full backs:Chris Latham, Julian Huxley.

Wings: Lote Tuqiri, Adam Ashley-Cooper, Drew Mitchell, Mark Gerrard.

Centres: Stirling Mortlock (captain) Scott Staniforth, Matt Giteau.

Five-eighths: Berrick Barnes, Stephen Larkham.

Halfbacks: George Gregan (v-c), Sam Cordingley.

No.8s: Wycliff Palu, David Lyons, Stephen Hoiles.

Flankers: George Smith, Phil Waugh (v-c), Rocky Elsom, Hugh McMeniman.

Locks: Dan Vickerman, Nathan Sharpe, Mark Chisholm.

Props: Guy Shepherdson, Al Baxter, Matt Dunning, Greg Holmes.

Hookers: Stephen Moore, Adam Freier, Sean Hardman

The two glaring omissions from the squad for me, are Rodney Blake and Tatafu Poloata-Nau.

Baxter,Lyons, and Hardman should consider themselves extremely lucky.I wouldn't have picked 'em.

Your thoughts on the squad?

Best 22 from that squad:

1. Greg Holmes
2. Stephen Moore
3. Guy Shepherdson
4. Nathan Sharpe
5. Dan Vickerman
6. Rocky Elsom
7. George Smith
8. Wycliff Palu
9. George Gregan
10. Stephen Larkham
11. Lote Tuqiri
12. Matt Giteau
13. Stirling Mortlock
14. Adam Ashley-Cooper
15. Chris Latham

16. Adam Freier
17. Al Baxter :(
18. Hugh McMeniman
19. Phil Waugh
20. Stephen Hoiles
21. Scott Staniforth
22. Drew Mitchell

Not bad at all
Just glad I can watch Gregan a few more times. I'm assuming he's done with Internationals after the World Cup, correct?

Well, if you weren't ****** enough, here's the reason he wasn't chosen...

Blake shows he's worthy of Cup Selection

July 22, 2007 - 6:44PM

Rodney Blake highlighted his considerable worth with a try-scoring hat-trick on Sunday but bizarre circumstances beyond his control may have cost the Wallabies prop a World Cup prize.

Blake scored three tries in just 50 minutes, including his first after 22 seconds, as his Brisbane club side Sunnybank powered to a 40-10 preliminary final win over GPS.

With Test coach and selector John Connolly in the stands, it was a timely effort which cried out for a ticket to the World Cup just a day before Australia's 30-man squad is to be named.

But Connolly was at Ballymore most hoping to see tight-head Blake pack down at loose-head to further claims for one of four prop spots in his squad.

While the 130kg 24-year-old is considered a more damaging prospect, it is Wallabies bench prop Al Baxter in line to take the final place due to his better ability to also scrummage at loose-head.

Sunnybank had agreed to a pre-meditated plan to help out Blake by switching him to loose-head when fellow Red and World Cup contender Greg Holmes was substituted, but injuries to two GPS props forced uncontested scrums.

By the time Holmes, effective and abrasive in just his third match back from shoulder surgery, was rested after 55 minutes, the set-piece had been de-powered and Connolly was on his way home.

Just to make one last reminder, Blake - sin-binned in the first half - ended a sharp Dragons movement to carry two defenders over the line for his third try and a 33-10 lead.

"I was supposed to go to loose-head but it didn't happen," said Blake, who denied World Cup selection was on his mind.

"It's all right, I'll look forward to next week and the grand final."

Ironically, Holmes, likely to win a berth ahead of Waratah loose-head Benn Robinson, felt Blake would be a shoo-in while he would struggle.

"I'm definitely happy to be back and playing but I'm a long shot for the World Cup at the moment, which is disappointing but that's life," he said.

"Rodney, he'll definitely go."

The prop spots are two of five contentious choices Connolly and fellow selectors Scott Johnson and Michael O'Connor are mulling over.

Queenslander Sean Hardman is expected to pip Tatafu Polota-Nau for the third hooker role and Berrick Barnes may just sneak past Ryan Cross to be the last back included.

A last-minute rethink of No.8, forced by problems to Wycliff Palu (shoulder) and David Lyons (blood clot) and the unsteadiness at the back of the scrum without them in Australia's 26-12 loss to New Zealand on Saturday night, could cost an earmarked lock.

James Horwill and Mark Chisholm are now vulnerable with consideration given to naming both Palu and Lyons, as well as shadows, subject to fitness.

The squad will be announced at the John Eales Medal dinner in Brisbane on Monday night.

Skipper Stirling Mortlock is among the front-runners to take the annual best and fairest prize along with Nathan Sharpe, Matt Giteau and Rocky Elsom.

Nah, no chance for Cross. I never even thought about him. I dare say next year he will certainly get a bench spot, assuming he continues to play well of course and develops as you'd expect.
Blake should be furious. I really feel for the guy. Oh well, he has time to go to another RWC.
I think Blake will come off much stronger and more determined next year. It's not the end of the road for him and Robinson. They're still young and full of energy. Same TPN.

Hell, they'd be the wallabies main attacking weapon in 2011.

1. Benn Robinson

2. Tatafu Polota-Nau

3. Rodney Blake
i would have thought that they would have still taken TPN over hardman, cuz he wont be injured by the time he is called upon, and hardman is very average.

i also completely agree with juggernaut about the scrum for the future.. good signs methinks...
All in all, a better squad than i thought we would have.. a few players really came thru this year and showed that they are good enough..
Man, after watching Blake play his last game in the Super 14... thought he would have been in for sure.
Intersting call on Barnes there too... nothing wrong with the guy for mine but would have thought they would have given him a run in the Tri Nations.
Think he might be the 3rd 1st5?

If the Aussies suffer any injuries to the backline during the early stages of the cup... don;t think they are going to be in a really good position. If say Larkham or Mortlock or Git. get injured...
Rodney Blake should be in the squad, but he's not the best tight head in the country.

That credit goes to Guy Shepherdson.

Anyways - Baxter, Lyons, and Mitchell shouldn't be going to the World Cup.

I would rather have Blake or Henderson instead of Baxter, and Horwill or Tawake instead of Lyons.

I would also prefer to have Lachlan Turner or even Digby Ioane instead of Mitchell, however, Shepherd is extremely unlucky not to be there after his form in the Super 14 but he's just not fit enough yet.

I'm still hoping that Palu and Lyons won't be fit to go to France and Tawake will get a spot. His form in the last half of the Super 14 showed he had more to offer than both of those other guys.

Anyways, I'm not sure if the 17/13 split of players is a good idea.

This would've been the squad for me if there were no injury concerns with any of the players -


Greg Holmes, Matt Dunning, Guy Shepherdson, Rodney Blake, Jeremy Paul, Stephen Moore, Tatafu Polata-Nau, Dan Vickerman, Mark Chisholm, Nathan Sharpe, Hugh McMeniman, George Smith, Phil Waugh, Rocky Elsom, Jone Tawake


George Gregan, Josh Holmes, Sam Cordingley, Stephen Larkham, Berrick Barnes, Matt Giteau, Scott Staniforth, Stirling Mortlock, Adam Ashley-Cooper, Cameron Shepherd, Lote Tuqiri, Lachlan Turner, Chris Latham, Mark Gerrard, Julian Huxley
After all this time searching for depth in the front row we're back with dunning and baxter in the squad!!!

Also not pleased with Lyons, Hardman and huxley in the squad either.

Cant wait till connolly goes.
Can't believe Baxter got in ahead of Blake or even Robinson both are clearly better than him.

As Ella has stated the squad lacks that x-factor player that a Turner or Ioane could bring, surely they could have had enough room for one of those guys.

Also been reading Matt Cockbain is on standby which is a joke considering we have much better options. Adam Wallace Harrison for one should be considered ahead of him.
Can't believe Baxter got in ahead of Blake or even Robinson both are clearly better than him.

As Ella has stated the squad lacks that x-factor player that a Turner or Ioane could bring, surely they could have had enough room for one of those guys.

Also been reading Matt Cockbain is on standby which is a joke considering we have much better options. Adam Wallace Harrison for one should be considered ahead of him.

First he wants Matthew Burke... now Matt Cockbain?!

I'm surprised he hasn't dumped the squad and tried to recall the 30 man squad that won the World Cup in '99...

If one of either Palu or Lyons can't go then Tawake should get the nod...

If both can't go then Tawake and Horwill should go to France...

Anyways, a list of players who should be in that shadow group instead of Cockbain - Al Campbell, Adam Wallace-Harrison, Mitchell Chapman, Julian Salvi, David Pocock...

I thought Cockbain was terrible throughout the 2003 World Cup and Owen Finegan should've been in the squad instead.

Just because he played well against a group of semi-professional club rugby players doesn't warrant possible selection into a Wallaby World Cup squad when there have been plenty of other good players playing well for Australia A and their Super 14 teams.

John Connolly is an absolute joke. Arguably, the two best hookers in the country aren't there, and he still names a bench player 'vice-captain.' Not to mention the absolute nothingness that Drew Mitchell brings to the team.

Bah! I don't know if Australia can go too far. It's going to take a lot of the good players in the team to step up and make some of the average players around them look better.

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