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Pocock on course for Italy return

Date

Russell Jackson

Brumbies and Wallabies star David Pocock.

Brumbies and Wallabies star David Pocock. Photo: Andrew Campbell

WALLABY David Pocock remains on track to return for next weekend's rugby Test against Italy in Florence but Kane Douglas's chances of playing out the remainder of the European tour are doubtful.

Coach Robbie Deans said Douglas, who has a knee injury, would be assessed before the team travelled to Italy with the strong possibility a second player would be called into the squad.

Standby forward Scott Higginbotham joined the squad in Britain this weekend and is available to face Italy after serving a suspension for striking All Blacks' skipper Richie McCaw.

Pocock was expected to make his long-awaited return from a knee injury in game two of the tour against England before he had a setback.

The Brumbies recruit trained strongly in Paris on the opening week of the tour before suffering a calf strain in London.

Having used more than 40 players in 13 Tests this year, mostly due to injury, Deans was loathe to say Pocock would be right to face the Italians.

''Given this year's history, I'm not going to make any predictions … I would suggest he would be right,'' Deans said.

''It's a not a major (injury) … He's coming back off an injury and we're just making sure that when he returns, he's good to go.''

Pocock hasn't played since he damaged knee ligaments in the Wallabies' opening Bledisloe Cup match with New Zealand in August.

Higginbotham was drafted in for reserve lock Rob Simmons, who was banned for eight matches for a lifting tackle in the Wallabies' 33-6 loss to France.

While the Wallabies are set to appeal against the severity of the ban, it's believed they are resigned to losing the Queenslander for the remainder of the tour.

Deans has a second player in mind to call into the squad but said that would be communicated when the time was right.

Australia play Wales in the fourth and final leg of the European tour in Cardiff on November 25.

Rugby Internationals 2014

Round 1
Sat, 07 JunTimes shown AEST
SAM 18 vs TGA 18 Report Stats
FJI 25 vs ITA 14 Report Stats
NZL 20 vs ENG 15 Report Stats
AUS 50 vs FRA 23 Report Stats
Sun, 08 JunTimes shown AEST
RSA 47 vs WXV 13 Report Stats
ARG 17 vs IRE 29 Report Stats
USA 6 vs SCO 24 Report Stats
CAN 25 vs JPN 34 Report Stats
View All Fixtures
Round 2
Sat, 14 JunTimes shown AEST
SAM 15 vs ITA Report Stats
FJI 45 vs TGA 17 Report Stats
NZL 28 vs ENG 27 Report Stats
AUS 6 vs FRA Report Stats
Sun, 15 JunTimes shown AEST
RSA 38 vs WAL 16 Report Stats
CAN 17 vs SCO 19 Report Stats
ARG 17 vs IRE 23 Report Stats
USA 29 vs JPN 37 Report Stats
View All Fixtures
Round 3
Sat, 21 JunTimes shown AEST
ARG 19 vs SCO 21 Report Stats
FJI 13 vs SAM 18 Report Stats
JPN 26 vs ITA 23 Report Stats
AUS 39 vs FRA 13 Stats
NZL 36 vs ENG 13 Report Stats
Sun, 22 JunTimes shown AEST
RSA 31 vs WAL 30 Report Stats
USA 38 vs CAN 35 Report Stats
View All Fixtures
Round 4
Sun, 29 JunTimes shown AEST
RSA 55 vs SCO 6 Report Stats
View All Fixtures
Round 5
Sun, 02 NovTimes shown AEDT
BAR 36 vs AUS 40 Report Stats
USA 6 vs NZL 74 Report Stats
View All Fixtures
Round 6
Sun, 09 NovTimes shown AEDT
ITA 24 vs SAM 13 Report Stats
ENG 21 vs NZL 24 Report Stats
WAL 28 vs AUS 33 Report Stats
FRA 40 vs FJI 14 Report Stats
IRE 29 vs RSA 15 Report Stats
SCO 41 vs ARG 31 Report Stats
View All Fixtures
Round 7
Sun, 16 NovTimes shown AEDT
ITA 18 vs ARG 20 Report Stats
ENG 28 vs RSA 31 Report Stats
WAL 17 vs FJI 13 Report Stats
SCO 16 vs NZL 24 Report Stats
FRA 29 vs AUS 26 Report Stats
Mon, 17 NovTimes shown AEDT
IRE 49 vs GEO 7 Report Stats
View All Fixtures
Round 8
Sun, 23 NovTimes shown AEDT
ITA 6 vs RSA 22 Report Stats
SCO 37 vs TGA 12 Report Stats
IRE 26 vs AUS 23 Report Stats
WAL 16 vs NZL 34 Report Stats
ENG 28 vs SAM 9 Report Stats
FRA 13 vs ARG 18 Report Stats
View All Fixtures
Round 9
Sun, 30 NovTimes shown AEDT
ENG 26 vs AUS 17 Report Stats
WAL 12 vs RSA 6 Report Stats
View All Fixtures
 
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