Wallabies assistant coach Stephen Larkham says that scrumhalf Nic White could still play a role at the Rugby World Cup.
White and his Brumbies teammate Christian Lealiifano were the surprise ommissions from coach Michael Cheika’s World Cup squad, but with just 2 specialist scrumhalves in the group Larkham said that White will be called on if either Will Genia or Nick Phipps get injured.
The tenacious scrumhalf played a vital role in the Wallabies’ recent victory over the All Blacks in Sydney which saw them claim The Rugby Championship title, and Brumbies coach Larkham admitted that White was understandably disappointed that he did not make the cut for the global showpiece in England next month.
Veteran lock James Horwill and scrumhalf Nic White were the 2 big omissions Friday as southern hemisphere champions, Australia’s Wallabies named their 31-man squad to tackle a challenging group at next month’s Rugby World Cup.
Horwill captained the Wallabies at the last Rugby World Cup in New Zealand but was a high-profile casualty with Kane Douglas returning as 1 of 4 2nd-rowers in the line-up, alongside Dean Mumm, Rob Simmons and Will Skelton.
Coach Michael Cheika phoned Horwill on Thursday to break the news and have what he called “a very difficult conversation”.
The Wallabies have recalled Quade Cooper and rested David Pocock – ditching their successful twin openside flank weapon.
This is amongst 6 changes made to the side to face the All Blacks in Auckland on Saturday.
After beating New Zealand last week in Sydney, to claim the Rugby Championship, the Wallabies are now aiming to win the Bledisloe Cup for the 1st time in 13 years and end a 39-year losing streak at Eden Park.
But with 1 eye on the bigger prize of the Rugby World Cup, starting in England next month, coach Michael Cheika has put last week’s 27 / 19 victory behind him and made wholesale changes to test the depth of his squad.
Wallaby coach Michael Cheika started to show his World Cup hand when he reduced his squad to just 31 players on Friday.
Cheika cut 9 players from the extended squad ahead of the opening Round of The Rugby Championship – when Australia play South Africa in Brisbane on 18 July.
Christian Lealiifano and Wycliff Palu were 2 of the high-profile casualties of the Wallaby cull.
The other 7 players left out from the initial 40-man train-on squad are Dave Dennis, James Hanson, Tetera Faulkner, Samu Kerevi, Toby Smith, Henry Speight and Nic White.
Following a gruelling 5-day camp at Sunshine Coast Stadium, the squad will assemble in Brisbane this Sunday 12 July.
The 31-man squad, captained by hooker Stephen Moore, boasts 2 non-capped players – with Rory Arnold and Taqele Naiyaravoro both closing in on their 1st Wallaby appearance.
Brumbies scrumhalf Nic White has arrived in Cape Town ahead of Saturday’s clash against the DHL Stormers at Newlands.
The Brumbies flew into South Africa on Monday ready for a big week in the Cape, the Stormers preparing to right the wrongs of last week after falling to the Toyota Cheetahs.
White returns for the Stormers match this weekend after 3 weeks out, his ankle injury now firmly beaten.
He said the Stormers presented the Brumbies with a significant challenge.
Both Sekope Kepu (Waratahs) and Nic White (Brumbies), have added their names to the long list of Australian Players who will pack up and go play rugby in France after the Rugby World Cup of 2015.
Australian international prop Sekope Kepu has become the latest addition to the conveyor belt moving players from the Southern Hemisphere to France.
Kepu signed a three-year deal with ambitious Top 14 club Bordeaux-Begles.
The 28-year-old Wallaby – who will join after this year’s World Cup – is the second player from the Waratahs to join the club coached by former France captain Raphael Ibanez.
Nic White and David Pocock will help lead the Brumbies as vice-captains in 2015, after head coach Stephen Larkham and captain Stephen Moore made the announcement on Thursday.
Both Pocock and White have proven leadership qualities having led professional sides on the big stage in the past.
White was named the Brumbies youngest captain against the Hurricanes in 2013, while Pocock has captained both the Wallabies and the Western Force.
A former Brumbies academy captain, White said he was thrilled to have been acknowledged with the vice-captaincy of the main squad.
The Springboks have accepted the challenge:
WATCH: Springbok video here:
Former Springbok legend Joost van der Westhuizen has become the latest celebrity to take the Ice Bucket Challenge, to raise funds for motor neuron disease, according to the Times Live website.
WATCH: Joost take the Ice Bucket Challenge:
Australia have suspended six players for one match for drinking in midweek before Saturday’s win over Ireland and warned nine more.
Wallabies coach Ewan McKenzie acted after “a group of players made the decision to stay out late and consume inappropriate levels of alcohol”.
Flyhalf Matt Toomua will make his debut for Australia, while Quade Cooper was named on the bench for Saturday’s opening Rugby Championship match against New Zealand in Sydney.
Toomua was given the starting No.10 assignment ahead of Cooper by new Wallaby coach Ewen McKenzie, for the match doubling up as a Bledisloe Cup encounter.
Brumbies scrumhalf Nic White was assaulted at a music festival and has fractured his jaw, but is not expected to miss the start of the Super Rugby season.