Australian Barbarians v England, Gosford, June 15
Polota-Nau set to bolster front row strength
June 13, 2010
Waratahs hooker Tatafu Polota-Nau breaks past Gary Botha of the Bulls, Bulls v Waratahs, Super 14, Loftus Versfeld, February 27, 2010
Waratahs hooker Tatafu Polota-Nau is set for a return to the Green and Gold next weekend © Getty Images

Waratahs hooker Tatafu Polota-Nau is set to provide the Wallabies with a timely front row boost after being named in the Australian Barbarians side to face England in Gosford on Tuesday.

The 24-year-old, capped 23 times by Australia, has been out of action with an ankle injury and his replacements - Saia Faingaa and Huia Edmonds - both struggled against a dominant England scrum in Perth on Saturday. As a result, Polota-Nau can expect a return to the Wallabies' front row for the second Test in Sydney next Saturday should he come through his comeback game unscathed.

Peter Hynes, Kurtley Beale, Pat McCutcheon and Rob Simmons are all new inclusions to the starting line-up, from the combination that drew with England 28-28 in Perth last week. Hynes and McCutcheon both featured off the bench during the opening tour match at ME Bank Stadium, while Beale was an un-used substitute. Simmons also re-enters, after missing the last two weeks of the Super 14 programme due to a fractured cheekbone.

Another change from last week's run on line-up sees Beale step in at fly-half, after scoring two tries from fullback during the Wallabies' 49-3 Test win over Fiji earlier in the month. Beale will also handle the goal-kicking duties for the Australian side. Brumbies skipper Stephen Hoiles will again lead the side, this time in a sole capacity, after sharing the reins with Berrick Barnes last week. Barnes, who featured in last night's 27-17 Test win over England in Perth, has been named on the bench.

Tuesday night's match is the decider of a two-match series between the Australian Barbarians and England, with the honours even after last week's thrilling drawn contest. Both sides scored three tries in the game, with James O'Connor scoring all three of the Barbarians' tries on a night where he contributed 25 of his team's points. The 19-year-old is listed on the Baa-baas' bench for the return game, after having featured from fullback in last night's opening Cook Cup Test.

O'Connor is one of eight players who featured in Saturday night's match squad that again appear in the Australian squad. The others are Beale, Hynes, James Slipper, Mark Chisholm, Matt Hodgson, Luke Burgess and Barnes. All but Beale and Hynes have been listed amongst the Barbarians' reserves.

Australian Barbarians: Peter Hynes, Nick Cummins, Will Chambers, Anthony Faingaa, Lachie Turner, Kurtley Beale; Josh Valentine, Pekahou Cowan, Tatafu Polota-Nau, Laurie Weeks, Mitchell Chapman, Rob Simmons, Ben McCalman, Pat McCutcheon, Stephen Hoiles (capt)

Replacements: Huia Edmonds, James Slipper, Mark Chisholm, Matt Hodgson, Luke Burgess, Berrick Barnes, James O'Connor.


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