Wallabies name extended squad

Australia head coach Robbie Deans has named 12 uncapped players in his provisional squad for the autumn tour of Europe. [more]

Wallabies name extended squad

Australia head coach Robbie Deans has named 12 uncapped players in his provisional squad for the autumn tour of Europe.

Deans has selected an initial 40-man training party with the intention of reducing the number to 36 on October 14.

"It's a reality that not every player who attends the training camp over the next two weeks will go on tour, but the time we spend together will still be invaluable for everyone involved," said Deans, whose men face mid-week matches against Leicester Tigers and Munster, as well as Tests against Wales, England, Italy and France and a Hong Kong encounter with the All Blacks.

"Injuries have been a factor on the tours we've had previously, especially with the addition of the midweek fixtures. I've no doubt that the demanding schedule we have on this trip, with seven games in five weeks, will test us again."

Among those looking for their first caps in late October and November is 34-year-old Reds lock Van Humphries.

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Humphries, who made his state debut for Queensland 10 years ago joins fellow second row Nathan Sharpe as the only player in the group to have already celebrated his 30th birthday.

Ex-Australian Schoolboys winger Rod Davies, Australian Sevens centre Brackin Karauria-Henry, Western Force hooker Nathan Charles and second row Pat O'Connor are the other four players enjoying their first-ever Wallaby squad call up, while Mitchell Chapman, Dave Dennis, Kane Douglas, Scott Higginbotham, Richard Kingi, Pat McCabe and Matt Toomua are all yet to wear senior Australian colours.

Lock Mark Chisholm, centre Rob Horne and wing Lachie Turner are the only players who appeared for Australia during the 2010 Tri Nations not to be named in the squad, with Chisholm and Horne missing out through injury and Turner away on Sevens duty.

"The fact that most of the uncapped blokes have at least had some time with us is a positive, in terms of their level of background," added Deans.

"We are not totally starting at zero as far as their knowledge of our method and our environment is concerned.

"Our awareness of the talent available is much greater, as is the players' knowledge of our systems, as is evidenced by the fact that only five of the guys named today haven't been with us in some capacity previously.

"Not only are the players who attend the training camp but don't make the final touring squad in line for call ups if we have injuries, their involvement also potentially provides opportunities beyond that if they use the experience to their advantage."

Australia initial squad: Ben Alexander, Adam Ashley-Cooper, Berrick Barnes, Kurtley Beale, Richard Brown, Luke Burgess, Nathan Charles, Mitchell Chapman, Quade Cooper, Ben Daley, Rod Davies, Dave Dennis, Kane Douglas, Huia Edmonds, Rocky Elsom, Anthony Faingaa, Saia Faingaa, Will Genia, Matt Giteau, Scott Higginbotham, Matt Hodgson, Peter Hynes, Van Humphries, Brackin Karauria-Henry, Sekope Kepu, Richard Kingi, Salesi Ma'afu, Pat McCabe, Ben McCalman, Drew Mitchell, Stephen Moore, Dean Mumm, James O'Connor, Pat O'Connor, David Pocock, Benn Robinson, Nathan Sharpe, Rob Simmons, James Slipper, Matt Toomua

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