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.