Pocock to start at blindside against Wales

David Pocock has been recalled to Australia's starting line-up to take the blindside flanker role for Saturday's Test against Wales in Cardiff.

Pocock was named among the replacements for the third and final Bledisloe Cup defeat against New Zealand in Auckland last month following a month on the sidelines due to a broken hand.

The 28-year-old comes in at blindside for the first time at international level in the absence of the suspended Dean Mumm, with coach Michael Cheika going with Lopeti Timani at number eight for the Wallabies' first game of their Northern Hemisphere tour.

Tevita Kuridrani gets the nod to come in at centre after Samu Kerevi (ankle) was ruled out, so Israel Folau remains at full-back for the clash at the Principality Stadium.

Hooker Tolu Latu is in line to make his Wallabies bow from the bench, while Scott Fardy and James Slipper have also been named among the replacements and James Hanson misses out.

Australia head coach Cheika said: "I'm just seeing Pocock back from injury and he's very motivated,

"They [Pocock and Hooper] can share the openside work if they want to and do things differently. I just think that's the right feel.

"The like for like would've been the go with Fardy but I think that Pocock has added qualities that he'll bring to this game."


Australia team: Israel Folau, Dane Haylett-Petty, Tevita Kuridrani, Reece Hodge, Henry Speight, Bernard Foley, Nick Phipps, Scott Sio, Stephen Moore (captain), Sekope Kepu, Rory Arnold, Adam Coleman, David Pocock, Michael Hooper, Lopeti Timani.

Replacements: Tolu Latu, James Slipper, Allan Alaalatoa, Rob Simmons, Scott Fardy, Nick Frisby, Quade Cooper, Sefa Naivalu


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