Kerevi, Rodda named to return for Wallabies

Fri, 03/09/2021, 04:43 am
Nathan Williamson
by Nathan Williamson
Wallabies scrumhalf Tate McDermott and backrower Lachlan Swinton have spoken to media from Perth.

Samu Kerevi and Izack Rodda will make their long-awaited return to the Wallabies side for the third Bledisloe Test against the All Blacks in Perth on September 5.

Kerevi comes into the side at inside centre for Hunter Paisami, who will miss the game due to the birth of his child.

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It will mark his first appearance since the 2019 Rugby World Cup, having spent the past two years in Japan plying his trade for Suntory.

Meanwhile, Rodda will come off the bench in place of Lukhan Salakaia-Loto in front of his new home crowd after signing with the Force for the 2022 Super Rugby Pacific season.

There is one change to the starting forward pack from the second Test defeat, with hooker Folau Fainga’a set to play his first Test of 2021.

Bradon Paenga-Amosa (neck) was not considered due to injury, however, coach Dave Rennie admitted Fainga'a was set to start regardless as a result of his standout form in training.

On the bench, Lachlan Lonergan comes back into the side, joined by Brumbies team-mate Pete Samu and Jordan Petaia.

Hooper leads from the front

“It’s great to be able to call on the experience of Samu and Izack this weekend with Hunter and Lukhan leaving the group to be with their partners in what’s a really exciting time of their lives," coach Dave Rennie said in a statement.

“Both Samu and Izack have worked really hard since joining the group, been positive additions and have earned their opportunity to pull on the gold jersey on Sunday afternoon at Optus Stadium.

“The past three weeks in Perth have given us a chance to train hard on the field, refresh off it and connect with the local community.

“We are excited about the chance to be back on home soil and put in a performance that all of our supporters can be proud of.”

WALLABIES SIDE TO FACE ALL BLACKS IN BLEDISLOE III

1. James Slipper (105 Tests)

2. Folau Fainga’a (16 Tests)

3. Allan Alaalatoa (48 Tests)

4. Darcy Swain (5 Tests)

5. Matt Philip (14 Tests)

6. Lachlan Swinton (3 Tests)

7. Michael Hooper (c) (110 Tests)

8. Rob Valetini (9 Tests)

9. Tate McDermott (7 Tests)

10. Noah Lolesio (7 Tests)

11. Marika Koroibete (38 Tests)

12. Samu Kerevi (33 Tests)

13. Len Ikitau (4 Tests)

14. Andrew Kellaway (4 Tests)

15. Tom Banks (16 Tests)

Replacements

16. Lachlan Lonergan (2 Tests)

17. Angus Bell (7 Tests)

18. Taniela Tupou (30 Tests)

19. Izack Rodda (25 Tests)

20. Pete Samu (10 Tests)

21. Nic White (37 Tests)

22. Reece Hodge (48 Tests)

23. Jordan Petaia (9 Tests)

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