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Will Genia dumped from Wallabies squad

Axed: Wallabies halfback Will Genia has been dumped in favour of Nic White and Nick Phipps.

Axed: Wallabies halfback Will Genia has been dumped in favour of Nic White and Nick Phipps. Photo: Getty Images

Waratahs five-eighth Bernard Foley will wear the coveted Wallabies No.10 jersey and decorated Test halfback Will Genia has been dumped from the squad to play France for the first Test in Brisbane this weekend. 

Nic White has snatched the No.9 jersey from Genia, with NSW halfback Nick Phipps named on the bench. Despite much discussion about a drop in form over the past year, and relegation to the bench during the Rugby Championship, it is the first time Genia has been available and left out of a match squad since June 2010. 

In another big - but not entirely unexpected - selection call, uncapped Brumbies second rower Sam Carter has trumped James Horwill for a starting spot next to Queensland second-rower Rob Simmons. 

Horwill will start from the bench in an effort to regain the abrasive form that made him a must-have starting inclusion in Wallabies sides just 12 months ago. 

Foley, meanwhile, will also take on the goal-kicking responsibilities in his first ever start for the Wallabies. The 24-year-old made his Test debut against Argentina in Rosario in last year's Rugby Championship, scoring a try on debut. 

Foley beat NSW teammate and playmaking partner Kurtley Beale to the starting spot, with Beale named on the bench alongside Phipps and resurgent Brumbies back Pat McCabe. 

Wallabies coach Ewen McKenzie said form guided all of his selections.

"Nic and Bernard are two players who have had a huge influence in the results of their provincial teams over the past two seasons," McKenzie said. 

"I’ve also been pleased to see their development as playmakers since getting a taste of Test Rugby last year and you can sense they have a real confidence in running a game. 

"We have a very specific style of game we want to play – the Wallaby way – and their two skill-sets complement each other in ensuring we can deliver our game plan on the night. 

"They’re also established goal-kickers and you can never underestimate the importance of this skill at an international level."

Matt Toomua and Tevita Kuridrani have retained their spots in the midfield, with in-form NSW No.13 Adam Ashley-Cooper reprising the wing spot he finished with, alongside Nick Cummins, on last year's tour of Europe. Israel Folau returns at fullback. 

NSW hard man Wycliff Palu has capped a return to peak fitness and form in Super Rugby this year with inclusion at No.8, alongside vice-captain Michael Hooper and Brumbies blindside Scott Fardy. 

New Wallabies captain Stephen Moore starts in the No.2 jersey with James Slipper at loosehead and Sekope Kepu at tighthead. 

The Wallabies last played France in 2012, losing 33-6 in Paris. 

Wallabies: Israel Folau, Adam Ashley-Cooper, Tevita Kuridrani, Matt Toomua, Nick Cummins, Bernard Foley, Nic White; Wycliff Palu, Michael Hooper, Scott Fardy, Sam Carter, Rob Simmons, Sekope Kepu, Stephen Moore (c), James Slipper. Res: Tatafu Polota-Nau, Pek Cowan, Paddy Ryan, James Horwill, Ben McCalman, Nick Phipps, Kurtley Beale, Pat McCabe. 


  • Fantastic.... now that's a Wallaby team that can do some damage !

    Really happy for Bernard Foley in being selected at 10.... he does deserve it and will bring a real structure to our attack.... and outside defense. Also, I'm personally thrilled to see Sam Carter has been given the honour.... now it's up to him to TAKE it and run with it.
    Do it Sam.
    While I would've liked to have seen ACC at 13, I understand that Link is looking for a tried combo at 12 and 13.... hope he's got it right.
    Well done to Cliffy for regaining the 8 and Phipps getting the opportunity off the bench.
    In fact, the bench looks really strong and has depth across the park.

    Next stop Les Bleus.... c'arn da Wallaby !

    inner west sydney
    Date and time
    June 03, 2014, 12:45PM
    • Totally agree, Foley is an inspired pick and so is Carter. Big surprise is no Higginbotham and Genia. But it seems Link is looking at solid, hard workers who will gel as a team rather than the Deans era mentality of a star studded roster.

      Date and time
      June 03, 2014, 1:22PM
    • I'm not entirely convinced, Machooka. I think we're going to find that we'll miss Genia's big game experience. I'm a little worried that Nic White may go missing in action. Personally, I'd start Genia with Phipps on the bench.
      Happy with the rest of the team, though, particularly Sam Carter in the row. Great to see Pek Cowan on the bench but it is a shame that Matt Hodgson has to miss out. Unfortunate for him that we only need one genuine open-side breakaway in the squad.
      I have a good feeling about this 2014 Wallabies side.

      Big Dog
      Date and time
      June 03, 2014, 1:23PM
    • Big Dog - I completely disagree about "we only need one genuine open-side breakaway in the squad". Need I remind you about what happened when Australia lost Pocock in the first game of RWC 2011.

      I'd rather have a 7 on the bench who can cover 6 and 8 than an 8 or a 6 on the bench. If you lose Hooper early in the game, you lose a lot more than if you lose Palu or Fardy. 7 is a position of pure instinct - you either are a 7 or you're an impostor.

      Date and time
      June 03, 2014, 1:49PM
    • @ Big Dog. Genia's already been missing. Based on form he's the 3rd choice and rightly not selected. McKenzie said some good players will be left out and Genia is one of them.

      Date and time
      June 03, 2014, 2:03PM
    • I agree that AAC is better than Kuridrani at 13. I would have put him there with McCabe on the wing. If you want to stick with a tried combo, Foley, Beale and AAC has been amazing, and they link well with Folau. That's what I would have done.

      I'm happy with the forward pack, with the exception of Slipper. I hope he proves me wrong.

      Date and time
      June 03, 2014, 3:05PM
    • I assume you mean AAC, you keep typing ACC in most of your correspondence...

      Date and time
      June 03, 2014, 3:41PM
  • Just a note, but Adam Ashley Cooper has 86 caps, not 19 as you say in the photos. Otherwise, great article

    Surry Hills
    Date and time
    June 03, 2014, 1:03PM
    • Thanks ... it is actually 91 and the numbers were reversed during production.

      Date and time
      June 03, 2014, 1:18PM
    • You could also say that of ACC's rightful playing position.... 'reversed during production.'

      inner west sydney
      Date and time
      June 03, 2014, 2:12PM

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