Liam Wright to lead Wallabies against Wales in Sydney

Thu, Jul 4, 2024, 2:00 AM
Rugby Australia
by Rugby Australia
Liam Wright will lead the side out at Allianz Stadium on Saturday night. Photo: Getty Images
Liam Wright will lead the side out at Allianz Stadium on Saturday night. Photo: Getty Images

Liam Wright will become the 89th Wallabies captain when he leads the side out for their first Test of 2024 against Wales at Allianz Stadium on Saturday night.

Starting at blindside flanker, Wright has led the Queensland Reds since 2020 and also previously captained the Queensland U20s and Queensland Country in the National Rugby Championship.

He joins Reds teammate Fraser McReight and Brumbies’ Rob Valetini in the starting back row.

Test centurion James Slipper will line up for his 135th appearance in the gold jersey, with hooker Matt Faessler earning his first Wallabies start alongside Taniela Tupou who will run on at tighthead prop.

Western Force captain and Wahroonga Tigers junior Jeremy Williams will make his Test debut on Saturday night, combining in the second row with Lukhan Salakaia-Loto who will play his first international since 2021.

NSW Waratahs captain Jake Gordon will combine with Noah Lolesio in the halves, the pair starting together three times previously for their country.

Reds duo Hunter Paisami and Josh Flook will bring their midfield combination to Allianz Stadium, lining up at inside and outside centre respectively, with Flook the second of two debutants in the starting side.

Tom Wright returns to the side at fullback, with Andrew Kellaway and Filipo Daugunu on the wings.

Billy Pollard is set to make his second Test appearance as the substitute hooker, with Allan Alaalatoa and potential debutant Isaac Kailea the finishing props.

The 206cm Angus Blyth and the athletic Charlie Cale are two others in line for a potential Wallabies debut covering the second and back row respectively.

Tate McDermott will provide spark as the substitute scrumhalf, with his Reds teammate Tom Lynagh set to be just the twelfth son of a Wallaby to pull on the gold jersey, following in the footsteps of his World Cup-winning father, Michael.

Leeton Phantom junior and proud Wiradjuri man, Dylan Pietsch rounds out the matchday 23, named on the bench for his potential Wallabies debut.

Wallabies coach Joe Schmidt said: “The squad has worked hard over the last week or so to prepare as best we can for what’s going to be an incredibly tough Test against Wales.”

Watch all the action on Stan Sport with every Wallabies Test streaming ad-free, live and on demand in 4K UHD. Wallabies matches will also be shown live on the Nine Network.

Wallabies team to play Wales at Allianz Stadium, Sydney on Saturday 6 July, 7:45pm AEST

1. James Slipper (134 Tests) – Bond Pirates

2. Matt Faessler (5 Tests) – USQ Saints

3. Taniela Tupou (50 Tests) – Brothers Rugby

4. Jeremy Williams* - Wahroonga Tigers

5. Lukhan Salakaia-Loto (30 Tests) – Randwick

6. Liam Wright (c) (5 Tests) – Easts Tigers

7. Fraser McReight (17 Tests) – Albany Creek Brumbies

8. Rob Valetini (39 Tests) – Harlequin Junior Rugby Club

9. Jake Gordon (20 Tests) – Canterbury Berries

10. Noah Lolesio (17 Tests) – Tuggeranong Vikings

11. Filipo Daugunu (7 Tests) – Wests Bulldogs

12. Hunter Paisami (24 Tests) - Harlequin Junior Rugby Club

13. Josh Flook* - Brothers Rugby

14. Andrew Kellaway (26 Tests) – Hunters Hill Rugby

15. Tom Wright (25 Tests) – Clovelly Eagles

Substitutes

16. Billy Pollard (1 Test) – Lindfield Junior Rugby Club

17. Isaac Kailea** - Harlequin Junior Rugby Club

18. Allan Alaalatoa (67 Tests) – West Harbour Juniors

19. Angus Blyth** - Casuarina Beach Rugby Club

20. Charlie Cale** - Beecroft Junior Rugby Club

21. Tate McDermott (28 Tests) – Flinders Rugby

22. Tom Lynagh** - University of Queensland

23. Dylan Pietsch** - Leeton Phantoms

*denotes debut

**denotes potential debut

Wallabies 2024 Home Tests

July Tests

Wallabies v Wales, 7:45pm AEST, Saturday July 6 at Allianz Stadium, Sydney

Wallabies v Wales, 7:45pm AEST, Saturday July 13 at AAMI Park, Melbourne

Wallabies v Georgia, 3:45pm AEST, Saturday July 20 at Allianz Stadium, Sydney

The Rugby Championship/Bledisloe Cup

Wallabies v South Africa, 2:30pm AEST, Saturday August 10 at Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane

Wallabies v South Africa, 5:45pm AWST, Saturday August 17 at Optus Stadium, Perth

Wallabies v New Zealand, 3:45pm AEST, Saturday September 21 at Accor Stadium, Sydney

Tickets to the Wallabies 2024 Home Tests are available to purchase here.

Wallabies 2024 Home Tests in Sydney are supported proudly by the NSW Government through its tourism and major events agency, Destination NSW.

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