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Cheika names uncapped Pocock, Petaia in Wallabies World Cup squad

Credit: Reuters - Sports
Published on August 23, 2019 - Duration: 01:52s

Cheika names uncapped Pocock, Petaia in Wallabies World Cup squad

Australia coach Michael Cheika includes uncapped teenager Jordan Petaia and veteran David Pocock in World Cup squad

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Cheika names uncapped Pocock, Petaia in Wallabies World Cup squad

SHOWS: SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA (AUGUST 23, 2019) (REUTERS - ACCESS ALL) 1.

AUSTRALIAN WALLABIES RUGBY UNION CAPTAIN MICHAEL HOOPER WALKING DOWN STAIRS OF PLANE / AUSTRALIAN WALLABIES RUGBY UNION PLAYER SAMU KEREVI WALKING DOWN STAIRS OF PLANE / AUSTRALIAN WALLABIES RUGBY UNION PLAYER ALLAN ALAALATOA WALKING DOWN STAIRS OF PLANE / AUSTRALIAN WALLABIES RUGBY UNION PLAYER RORY ARNOLD WALKING DOWN STAIRS OF PLANE / AUSTRALIAN WALLABIES RUGBY UNION PLAYER ADAM ASHLEY COOPER WALKING DOWN STAIRS OF PLANE / AUSTRALIAN WALLABIES RUGBY UNION PLAYER KURTLEY BEALE WALKING DOWN STAIRS OF PLANE 2.

WALLABIES PLAYERS STANDING ON STEPS OF PLANE 3.

HOOPER LOOKING ON 4.

AUSTRALIAN WALLABIES RUGBY UNION PLAYER JAMES O'CONNOR WALKING DOWN STAIRS OF PLANE 5.

AUSTRALIAN WALLABIES RUGBY UNION PLAYER DAVID POCOCK WALKING DOWN STAIRS OF PLANE / AUSTRALIAN WALLABIES RUGBY UNION PLAYER IZACK RODDA / AUSTRALIAN WALLABIES RUGBY UNION PLAYER LUKHAN SALAKAIA-LOTO 6.

(SOUNDBITE) (English) AUSTRALIAN WALLABIES RUGBY UNION CAPTAIN, MICHAEL HOOPER, SAYING: "I was coming down the stairs, it was a bit of a pinch yourself moment; you realise how privileged and lucky you are to be in this position and we are to be representing the country going over to Japan here, coming up shortly.

So, to have us all together and the mission ahead is a great position to be in." on edge as well." 7.

WALLABIES SEATED 8.

O'CONNOR (R) AND AUSTRALIAN WALLABIES RUGBY UNION PLAYER JORDAN PETAIA (L) SEATED 9.

POCOCK (L) AND AUSTRALIAN WALLABIES RUGBY UNION PLAYER ROB SIMMONS (R) SEATED 10.

WALLABIES POSING FOR PHOTOGRAPHS 11.

ASHLEY COOPER SMILING 12.

WALLABIES SEATED IN FRONT OF QANTAS PLANE, POSING FOR PHOTOGRAPHS STORY: Australia coach Michael Cheika has included uncapped teenage centre Jordan Petaia in his World Cup squad along with veteran David Pocock on Friday (August 23) despite concerns over the loose forward's fitness ahead of the global showpiece in Japan.

Highly fancied Petaia is the only untested player in a seasoned squad captained by flanker Michael Hooper and boasting 1406 caps of test experience, 200 more than the roster for the 2015 tournament.

Pocock has not featured in Wallabies gold since a test against Italy last November and he barely played Super Rugby this year while struggling with a problematic calf injury.

The 31-year-old will have only one warmup before the World Cup, a farewell test against Samoa on September 7, to prove his body is still up to the rigours of test rugby.

Cheika also included veteran back Adam Ashley-Cooper for his fourth World Cup, just the second Wallaby to do so after George Gregan.

He has taken a gamble by only including two scrumhalves in Nic White and Will Genia, but has included three hookers in Tolu Latu, Folau Fainga'a and young Melbourne Rebel Jordan Uelese.

Australia take on Fiji in their World Cup opener in Sapporo on September 21 before their remaining Pool D matches against Wales, Uruguay and Georgia.

(Production: Jill Gralow, James Redmayne)

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