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Timani tastes life at Sharpe end

"Clearly the day is coming when Nathan [Sharpe, pictured] will not be available for us, so we have to prepare for that" ... Robbie Deans.

"Clearly the day is coming when Nathan [Sharpe, pictured] will not be available for us, so we have to prepare for that" ... Robbie Deans. Photo: Reuters

NATHAN SHARPE is remaining with the Wallabies until at least October, but the promotion of Sitaleki Timani to the Test starting XV shows the preparations for the future have already begun.

Although Sharpe was supposed to retire following this Saturday's third Test against Wales, he has told Wallabies coach Robbie Deans he will continue and play in the inaugural Rugby Championship, which also involves New Zealand, South Africa and Argentina.

This is some relief for Deans because the Wallabies second-row stocks are relatively shallow, especially with Test captain James Horwill expected to miss the rest of the season as he requires surgery on his ruptured hamstring and Dan Vickerman is unlikely to play again.

There are some promising second rows coming through the ranks, with Hugh Pyle and Caderyn Neville training with the Wallabies squad, but they are still some way off being considered for Test spots.

Therefore Deans wants to broaden the basket, which is why he has chosen Timani ahead of Rob Simmons for this weekend.

''Clearly the day is coming when Nathan will not be available for us, so we have to prepare for that. We want to give Sita some exposure and bring him on,'' Deans said. Simmons has ''had a big year, played a lot of rugby, and so we have to share that load''.

Deans said Sharpe's decision to postpone his retirement was ''good news for the group. You saw how important he is for the team at the death the other night when he played a key role in securing possession.

''It is a big decision for him, because it was a conscious choice of his to communicate he was going to retire,'' Deans said.

''He had made plans beyond the game, so he's had to put them on hold. That's never straight forward. To defer his retirement is a significant commitment from him. I don't think it is an indefinite deferment though.''

Sharpe will not be available for the end-of-year northern hemisphere tour and Deans is also not anticipating that Vickerman will return.

''I haven't spoken to Dan for a couple of weeks,'' he said.

''But I'm sure the moment he is able to play my phone will ring. But I don't think so. My last conversation with Dan revolved around just getting himself right for life going forward.

''I understand his leg is giving him a fair amount of grief from day to day. He might be at that point where he has conceded his playing career is over, but I have not had formal notification of that.''

Despite persistent complaints from the Welsh over how the breakdown had been policed, Deans weaved around the subject yesterday.

''The rules don't change from week to week,'' he said. ''We have the ability to meet referees week to week but nothing changes in between. The key is for players to adapt in the game,'' Deans said.

Rugby World Cup 2015

Round 1
Sat, 19 SepTimes shown AEST
ENG 0vs FJI 0 05:00Twic
TGA 0vs GEO 0 21:00Kholm
IRE 0vs CAN 0 23:30MilS
Sun, 20 SepTimes shown AEST
SAF 0vs JPN 0 01:45Brig
FRA 0vs ITA 0 05:00Twic
SAM 0vs USA 0 21:00Brig
WAL 0vs URU 0 23:30MilS
Mon, 21 SepTimes shown AEST
NZL 0vs ARG 0 01:45Wemb
Wed, 23 SepTimes shown AEST
SCO 0vs JPN 0 23:30Kholm
Thu, 24 SepTimes shown AEST
AUS 0vs FJI 0 01:45MilS
FRA 0vs ROM 0 05:00Olym
Fri, 25 SepTimes shown AEST
NZL 0vs NAM 0 05:00Olym
Sat, 26 SepTimes shown AEST
ARG 0vs GEO 0 01:45Kholm
ITA 0vs CAN 0 23:30Ella
Sun, 27 SepTimes shown AEST
SAF 0vs SAM 0 01:45Villa
ENG 0vs WAL 0 05:00Twic
AUS 0vs URU 0 21:00Villa
SCO 0vs USA 0 23:30Ella
Mon, 28 SepTimes shown AEST
IRE 0vs ROM 0 01:45Wemb
Wed, 30 SepTimes shown AEST
TGA 0vs NAM 0 01:45Sand
Fri, 02 OctTimes shown AEST
WAL 0vs FJI 0 01:45MilS
FRA 0vs CAN 0 05:00stadium:mk
Sat, 03 OctTimes shown AEST
NZL 0vs GEO 0 05:00MilS
SAM 0vs JPN 0 23:30stadium:mk
Sun, 04 OctTimes shown AEST
SAF 0vs SCO 0 01:45St James' Park
ENG 0vs AUS 0 06:00Twic
Mon, 05 OctTimes shown AEDT
ARG 0vs TGA 0 00:30KPS
IRE 0vs ITA 0 02:45Olym
Wed, 07 OctTimes shown AEDT
CAN 0vs ROM 0 02:45KPS
FJI 0vs URU 0 06:00stadium:mk
Thu, 08 OctTimes shown AEDT
SAF 0vs USA 0 02:45Olym
NAM 0vs GEO 0 06:00Sand
Sat, 10 OctTimes shown AEDT
NZL 0vs TGA 0 06:00St James' Park
Sun, 11 OctTimes shown AEDT
SAM 0vs SCO 0 00:30St James' Park
AUS 0vs WAL 0 02:45Twic
ENG 0vs URU 0 06:00Manch
ARG 0vs NAM 0 22:00KPS
Mon, 12 OctTimes shown AEDT
ITA 0vs ROM 0 00:30Sand
FRA 0vs IRE 0 02:45MilS
USA 0vs JPN 0 06:00Kholm
View All Fixtures
Round 2
Sun, 18 OctTimes shown AEDT
WinB 0vs RUpA 0 02:00Twic
WinC 0vs RUpD 0 06:00MilS
WinD 0vs RUpC 0 23:00MilS
Mon, 19 OctTimes shown AEDT
WinA 0vs RUpB 0 02:00Twic
Sun, 25 OctTimes shown AEDT
WQF1 0vs WQF2 0 02:00Twic
Mon, 26 OctTimes shown AEDT
WQF3 0vs WQF4 0 03:00Twic
Sat, 31 OctTimes shown AEDT
LSF1 0vs LSF2 0 07:00Olym
Sun, 01 NovTimes shown AEDT
WSF1 0vs WSF2 0 03:00Twic
View All Fixtures
Rugby World Cup 2015
Overall standings
Team P W L D +/- Pts
France 0 0 0 0 0 0
New Zealand 0 0 0 0 0 0
Canada 0 0 0 0 0 0
Tonga 0 0 0 0 0 0
Japan 0 0 0 0 0 0
View all
Rugby World Cup 2015
Overall standings
Team P W L D +/- Pts
Romania 0 0 0 0 0 0
Argentina 0 0 0 0 0 0
England 0 0 0 0 0 0
Georgia 0 0 0 0 0 0
Scotland 0 0 0 0 0 0
View all
Rugby World Cup 2015
Overall standings
Team P W L D +/- Pts
Australia 0 0 0 0 0 0
USA 0 0 0 0 0 0
Italy 0 0 0 0 0 0
Ireland 0 0 0 0 0 0
View all
Rugby World Cup 2015
Overall standings
Team P W L D +/- Pts
Fiji 0 0 0 0 0 0
Samoa 0 0 0 0 0 0
Namibia 0 0 0 0 0 0
South Africa 0 0 0 0 0 0
Wales 0 0 0 0 0 0
View all
 

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