No fringe players crack Wallabies side - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

No fringe players crack Wallabies side

By Melissa Woods 29/10/2003 06:01:29 PM Comments (0)

A record-breaking performance wasn't enough for any fringe Wallabies, including Stirling Mortlock, to break into the starting side for Saturday's key Rugby World Cup clash with Ireland.

The second-string Australian side re-wrote the record books with a 22-try, 142-0 thrashing of Namibia last Saturday, but coach Eddie Jones has reverted to the line-up which opened the tournament with a win over Argentina.

He made only one change, with tighthead prop Ben Darwin relegating Al Baxter to the bench.

"The guys who played last weekend gave us a real selection headache," Jones said.

"With some of the splits of selection it's 51-49 in favour of one player over the other, so it's very tight.

"In the end we chose this line-up which we think is the best to take on Ireland."

The match between the two unbeaten sides will decide the pool A winner, and who will get an easier path in the sudden-death play-offs starting next week.

Ireland will name its line-up for the Telstra Dome match on Thursday after players were given extra time to recover from Sunday's physical scrap with Argentina.

Touted as the saviour of the under-performing backline before the World Cup, tackle-busting Mortlock was overlooked for the 22, casting doubt over his involvement in the looming playoffs.

Talented Lote Tuqiri appears to have won the reserve utility back position in the squad.

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