Wallabies name eight uncapped players in tour squad
October 11, 2005

The Wallabies have today named five new faces for the up-coming Spring Tour of France and the UK, with November Tests against the French in Marseille, England at Twickenham, Ireland in Dublin and Wales at the Millennium Stadium.

Flanker Leroy Houston, centre and winger Digby Ioane, hooker Tatafu Polota-Nau, outside back Cameron Shepherd and lock Adam Wallace Harrison will all join Wallaby Captain George Gregan in the 31-man squad to depart Australia later this month.

As well as the five new faces, uncapped forwards Scott Fava, David Fitter and Greg Holmes have also been named, having already trained with the Wallabies this season, while Lloyd Johansson, Rocky Elsom and Hugh McMeniman will all make their first Senior Tour with the Wallabies.

Lock Nathan Sharpe will also make his first UK Tour with the Wallabies and will join Phil Waugh and Morgan Turinui as one of three vice captains in the squad.

Number 8 David Lyons, Clyde Rathbone and winger Ben Tune are included in a group of 14 players unavailable for selection due to injury, being rested or suspension.

National Coach Eddie Jones says the new faces will bring plenty of excitement and enthusiasm to the team, ahead of four Tests in four weeks, against the top four teams from this year's Six Nations.

"We've selected eight players who are uncapped at Test level and a further eight with less than ten caps to their name. When you balance this with the experience of Captain George Gregan and a dozen players who have been regulars in the Test squad for the last four years, it certainly makes for an exciting mix," said Jones.

"France, England, Ireland and Wales are all strong opposition, especially at home. It will be a challenging Tour, and one everyone is looking forward to."

"The players have been working hard already over the last four weeks and we'll now come into camp and continue those preparations for the first Test against France in Marseille on November 5."

Three of the new-comers, Houston, Ioane and Polota-Nau all represented the Australian Under 21s in Argentina this year, and never got the chance to play Super 12 rugby, while Houston, who will turn 19 in the second week of the Tour, will be the youngest member of the 2005 Spring Tour Squad.

The Wallabies will assemble in Sydney tomorrow for a four day camp, before heading to their base in Coffs Harbour next week and departing for France and the UK on Wednesday 26 October.

Australia squad for tour of Europe:
Al Baxter, Brendan Cannon, Mark Chisholm, Matt Dunning, Rocky Elsom, Scott Fava, David Fitter, Adam Freier, Mark Gerrard, Matt Giteau, George Gregan (captain), Matt Henjak, Greg Holmes, Leroy Houston, Digby Ioane, Lloyd Johansson, Chris Latham, Hugh McMeniman, Drew Mitchell, Tatafu Polota-Nau, John Roe, Mat Rogers, Wendell Sailor, Nathan Sharpe, Cameron Shepherd, George Smith, Lote Tuqiri, Morgan Turinui, Adam Wallace-Harrison, Phil Waugh, Chris Whitaker.

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