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Rennie makes seven changes to Wallabies side

Australia head coach Dave Rennie.

Rennie makes seven changes to Wallabies side

Australia have handed a test debut to 22-year-old outside-half Ben Donaldson for Saturday’s test match with Wales at the Principality Stadium.

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With a numbers players unavailable Wallabies head coach Davie Rennie has made seven changes to his starting XV following their narrow loss to Ireland in Dublin last weekend. Former Junior Wallaby, Donaldson will partner with club captain Jake Gordon who starts at scrumhalf for the side’s final Test of 2022. A new-look backrow sees Langi Gleeson also earn his first Test start at number eight in place of the injured Rob Valetini, while Fraser McReight comes in for Michael Hooper at openside flanker, with Jed Holloway rounding out the loose forward trio at blindside flanker. James Slipper will lead the side as loosehead prop in his 127th appearance for his country, partnering with long-time Brumbies teammates Folau Fainga’a and Allan Alaalatoa in the front row.  The athletic Nick Frost will be looking to continue his breakout debut season at international level, starting at lock alongside workhorse Cadeyrn Neville for the fourth time this year. Melbourne Rebels stalwart Reece Hodge will link up with Jordan Petaia in midfield. The Wallabies are looking to win at Principality Stadium for the first time since 2017.

“Ben has had a great year,” said Rennie. “He’s been impressive at training around his skillset and detail and has earned his opportunity to start for his country this week.
“It’s a special occasion for Sam and his family. Over the past five weeks he’s impressed us with his diligence and work ethic and deserves the chance to debut on Saturday.“We’re well aware of a Wales side that will be looking to respond after last week but we’re equally as motivated to finish our season on a positive note here in Cardiff.”

DFP – Leaderboard

Australia: T Wright; J Petaia, L Ikitau, R Hodge, M Nawaqanitawase; B Donaldson, J Gordon; J Slipper, F Fainga’a, A Alaalatoa, N Frost, C Neville, J Holloway, F McReight, L Gleeson.

Replacements: L Lonergan, T Robertson, S Talakai, N Hanigan, P Samu, T McDermott, N Lolesio, J Campbell.

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