Wallabies to be Mumm's boys
Four new faces in XV to play Gloucester
Last Updated: 03/11/09 11:51am
Mumm: captain for tour opener
Dean Mumm will captain Australia for the first time when the Wallabies take on Gloucester at Kingsholm on Tuesday evening, the opening game of their Grand Slam tour of Britain and Ireland.
"We had intended to avoid backing anyone up in the midweek fixture who had started against the All Blacks, but our injury circumstance in the midfield meant that Ryan was required to start."
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Four players - Tyrone Smith, Kurtley Beale, Dave Dennis and Salesi Ma'afu - will make their Australia debuts, while uncapped duo Richard Kingi and Matt Toomua are on the bench.
Centre Ryan Cross is the only player retained from the starting XV beaten by the All Blacks in Tokyo on Saturday.
"We had intended to avoid backing anyone up in the midweek fixture who had started against the All Blacks, but our injury circumstance in the midfield meant that Ryan was required to start," coach Robbie Deans said.
"We did look at starting Matt Toomua, but as he only joined the squad on Sunday when we arrived in London, and would only have the benefit of one day of preparation with the team, we felt that backing up Ryan was the better option.
"He got through the game last Saturday well and indicated to me straight after the Test match that he was keen to play."
A large crowd is expected for the game against a Gloucester side struggling in the bottom third of the Guinness Premiership.
Australia: 15 K Beale, 14 L Turner, 13 R Cross, 12 T Smith, 11 D Mitchell, 10 Q Cooper, 9 L Burgess; 1 S Kepu, 2 T Polota-Nau, 3 S Ma'afu, 4 D Dennis, 5 D Mumm (capt), 6 M Chapman, 7 M Hodgson, 8 R Brown
Replacements: 16 P Cowan, 17 M Dunning, 18 M Chisholm, 19 W Palu, 20 R Kingi, 21 M Toomua, 22 J O'Connor