Greg Growden

Greg Growden

Greg Growden is Chief Rugby Correspondent for The Sydney Morning Herald

Cooper, Beale saved by Deans for Springboks clash

Greg Growden Wallabies coach Robbie Deans has again shown faith in two of his Three Amigos by returning Kurtley Beale to the starting line-up and giving Quade Cooper another chance at No.

Rugby

Aussie trio vie for fullback in Argentina test

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Greg Growden Mike Harris, Pat McCabe and Dom Shipperley will be vying for the vacant fullback spot in Saturday night's Test against Argentina in Rosario, Argentina.

SUNDAY MAUL

Changes are afoot under Cheika

Greg Growden dinkus

Greg Growden It hasn't taken long for new Waratahs coach Michael Cheika to make an impact on the troubled province.

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Rugby

Harris in frame to be Wallabies new fullback

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - JUNE 29:  Mike Harris of the Reds is tackled by Stirling Mortlock of the Rebels during the round 16 Super Rugby match between the Rebels and the Reds at AAMI Park on June 29, 2012 in Melbourne, Australia.  (Photo by Scott Barbour/Getty Images)

Greg Growden Rosario: Mike Harris is set to become the fifth Wallabies fullback in ten Tests this season and Dave Dennis is under threat of being replaced in the backrow for Saturday night's international against...

Rugby

Battered and bruised, Wallabies must make stand in Argentina

Greg Growden dinkus

Greg Growden Australian Rugby has endured the most dreadful of weeks. And next week could be even worse, with the Wallabies heading deeper into the horror tour from hell.

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Wallabies beef up pack to prepare for tough battle with brutal Pumas

Tatafu Polota Nau

Greg Growden ROSARIO: In the land of gargantuan steaks and enormous forwards, the Wallabies will go for brawn in their pack to confront the Pumas on Saturday night.

Blades reminds his charges of the one that got away

Kurtley Beale

Greg Growden ROSARIO: Wallabies forwards coach Andrew Blades believes his team can take a lot from their only loss to Argentina in the past 25 years to ensure they finish their Rugby Championship on a high this...

Wallabies ready for character test

PRETORIA, SOUTH AFRICA - SEPTEMBER 28: Nathan Sharpe talks to his team during the Australian national rugby team Captains Run at Loftus Versfeld on September 28, 2012 in Pretoria, South Africa.  (Photo by Duif du Toit / Gallo Images / Getty Images)

Greg Growden ROSARIO: Wallabies captain Nathan Sharpe has told his players that even though they are missing a long line of key performers they can still prove they are a team with special character by rebounding...

Rugby

Cummins, Tapuai plug latest gaps in Test team

Ben Tapuai

Greg Growden ROSARIO: The Wallabies merry-go-round continues to spin with two more newcomers - Nick Cummins and Ben Tapuai - joining the Test team, taking the tally of players who have appeared in the green and...

Rugby

Wounded and weary Wallabies relying on pride to earn result

GOLD COAST, AUSTRALIA - SEPTEMBER 15:  Kurtley Beale of the Australian Wallabies is tackled during the Rugby Championship match between the Australian Wallabies and Argentina at Skilled Park on September 15, 2012 on the Gold Coast, Australia.  (Photo by Chris Hyde/Getty Images)

Greg Growden ROSARIO: Wherever they have gone in Argentina this week, there has been no reprieve for the Wallabies.

Off-the-ball exchanges a winner

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Greg Growden No matter if they are victors or losers today, the Wallabies will leave Argentina having won over the locals.

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Rugby

Beale aims for a perfect 10 to cement Wallabies five-eighth spot

Australia's Kurtley Beale, right, makes a catch as South Africa's captain Jean de Villiers, left, defends during their Rugby Championship at the Loftus Versfeld stadium in Pretoria, South Africa, Saturday, Sept. 29, 2012.  (AP Photo / Themba Hadebe)

Greg Growden ROSARIO: Kurtley Beale may only be the latest Test stop-gap measure at five-eighth until James O'Connor returns to the Wallabies, but the Rebels utility wants to make the pivotal spot his own.

Genia's signing fails to inspire Force, but Brumbies fly the flag abroad

Will Genia

Greg Growden The Western Force were unable to use the Will Genia signing to motivate them to beat the Stormers, but at least elsewhere Australian teams have gone up a level and rediscovered how to win offshore.

Foley proud of ill players' display of will

Berrick Barnes

Greg Growden THE Waratahs might have lost to the Crusaders on Sunday, but coach Michael Foley yesterday praised halfback Brendan McKibbin and five-eighth Berrick Barnes for playing even though extremely ill.

Injuries and departures give Beale room to make his mark as playmaker

Kurtley Beale

Greg Growden THE push for Kurtley Beale to take over the Wallabies Test five-eighth spot next month will turn into a massive shove if he holds his own against Springboks No.

Rising Reds spell danger for Brumbies

Greg Growden dinkus

Greg Growden The Brumbies look the real deal, but don't yet dismiss the Queensland Reds from finishing on top of the Australian conference.

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When Tahs were hard men and the opposition nervous

Greg Growden As far as Wild Bill, Jockey, Shirts, Fob and Steak were concerned, it didn't matter that the Springboks were supposedly the rugby masters.

Rugby

Mitchell in the mix for Boks seat on plane

Greg Growden Drew Mitchell is expected to be declared fit today for the Waratahs' two-match tour of South Africa, but whether he goes will be determined by what happens during tonight's game against the Bulls.

Crouch, touch, pause, disengage - scrum blight set for the chop

Greg Growden The IRB has for some time been known as the Irrational Rugby Board, due to its fair share of dopey decisions over the years.

Rugby union

Life is proving to be swell for Higginbotham

Scott Higginbotham

Greg Growden It all revolves around clearing the mind and getting some balance. Avoid turning rugby into an obsession. Immerse yourself in as many varied interests as possible.