14 Aug 2012

Cooper left out of Wallabies squad altogether

3:14 pm on 14 August 2012

Quade Cooper's been left out of the Australia's 22-strong squad for Saturday night's opening Bledisloe Cup test against the All Blacks, in Sydney.

Berrick Barnes retains his position as the Wallabies' starting first five, with Cooper also overlooked for the reserves.

Scott Higginbotham will start at number eight, moving from the side of the scrum for the injured Wycliff Palu, while Dave Dennis gets his second test start at flanker.

Anthony Faingaa returns to the midfield, in the only other change from the Wallabies last test starting lineup, which beat beat Wales in June.

The Wallabies last won a Bledisloe Cup series outright in 2001 and this year is the first three-match series for the trophy since 1998, having been played over two or four matches in recent years.

The full Wallabies squad is: Kurtley Beale, Adam Ashley-Cooper, Rob Horne, Anthony Faingaa, Digby Ioane, Berrick Barnes, Will Genia, Scott Higginbotham, David Pocock (capt), Dave Dennis, Nathan Sharpe, Sitaleki Timani, Sekope Kepu, Tatafu Polota Nau, Benn Robinson.

Reserves: Stephen Moore, James Slipper, Rob Simmons, Radike Samo, Michael Hooper, Nick Phipps, Drew Mitchell.