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St.George Queensland Reds trio Ben Tapuai, Mike Harris and Rob Simmons will participate in Sunday’s Queensland Premier Rugby Final before re-joining Australia’s 28-man Wallabies squad for their away leg of the Rugby Championship.
Eleven Queensland Reds players have been chosen in the Wallabies squad for upcoming matches against South Africa and Argentina although Tapuai, Harris and Simmons will join the group late after being released for the Sunnybank and University Premier Rugby Final on Sunday at Ballymore.
The Reds representatives are: Digby Ioane, Dom Shipperley, Ben Tapuai, Anthony Faingaa, Mike Harris, Scott Higginbotham, Radike Samo, Liam Gill, Rob Simmons, James Slipper and Saia Faingaa.
The squad, which departs on Thursday morning, is missing flyhalf Quade Cooper, who was last night ruled out by a knee cartilage injury.
The group does include the previously injured trio of hooker Stephen Moore (hamstring), lock Sitaleki Timani (hamstring) and winger Dominic Shipperley (dislocated finger).
All three players are expected to be available for selection for the match night squad for Australia’s first match on the tour, which comes against South Africa at Loftus Versfeld, Pretoria, on Saturday September 29.
The Wallabies will be bidding for back-to-back wins on the South African high veldt in that match, having clinched an epic 41-39 win at their last attempt at Bloemfontein in 2010, which represented Australia’s first win at altitude in the Republic for 47 years.
Shipperley, who underwent a finger operation on the middle finger of his right hand on Sunday after injuring it in the Test on the Gold Coast the week before, will travel with the squad in the morning.
Tapuai, Harris and Simmons will join the squad in Johannesburg next Tuesday.
The Qantas Wallabies squad for the two-game tour of South Africa and Argentina in The Castrol EDGE Rugby Championship is: Adam Ashley-Cooper (NSW Waratahs), Kurtley Beale (Melbourne Rebels), Digby Ioane (Queensland Reds), Dominic Shipperley (Queensland Reds), Nick Cummins (Western Force), Ben Tapuai (Queensland Reds), Anthony Fainga’a (Queensland Reds), Pat McCabe (Brumbies), Berrick Barnes (NSW Waratahs), Mike Harris (Queensland Reds), Nick Phipps (Melbourne Rebels), Brett Sheehan (Western Force), Scott Higginbotham (Queensland Reds), Radike Samo (Queensland Reds), Michael Hooper (Brumbies), Liam Gill (Queensland Reds), Dave Dennis (NSW Waratahs), Rob Simmons (Queensland Reds), Nathan Sharpe (Western Force), Kane Douglas (NSW Waratahs), Sitaleki Timani (NSW Waratahs), Ben Alexander (Brumbies), Paddy Ryan (NSW Waratahs), James Slipper (Queensland Reds), Benn Robinson (NSW Waratahs), Saia Fainga’a (Queensland Reds), Stephen Moore (Brumbies), Tatafu Polota Nau (NSW Waratahs).
24 MAY 2013
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