Australia No 8 Wycliff Palu recalled for Bledisloe Cup clash against All Blacks

Last Updated: 16/10/12 12:36pm

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Wycliff Palu: Has recovered from a shoulder injury

Wycliff Palu: Has recovered from a shoulder injury

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Wycliff Palu will make his long-awaited return to the Australia line-up for the Bledisloe Cup clash with New Zealand on Saturday.

The powerful No 8 has recovered from a shoulder injury to take his place in the starting XV in Brisbane.

The inclusion of Palu is one of four changes, with Adam Ashley-Cooper named on the wing after he missed the 25-19 win over Argentina with concussion while flanker Scott Higginbotham and prop Benn Robinson also start. Drew Mitchell is included on the bench.

"Adam has been cleared after the head knock he suffered in Pretoria," said Deans.

"He brings with him all-round skill but also a lot of voice in terms of on-field communication, which will be important with a lot of younger players around him."

Australia will be out to stop New Zealand's 16-Test winning run - with the Wallabies the last side to taste victory over the All Blacks.

"The All Blacks are the benchmark and proved it again through the Rugby Championship," Deans said.

"They are a step up from where we've been, but the guys have shown a lot of resilience over the last two months, and they're excited about the opportunity ahead of them on the weekend."

Australia: 15 Mike Harris, 14 Nick Cummins, 13 Ben Tapuai, 12 Pat McCabe, 11 Adam Ashley-Cooper, 10 Kurtley Beale, 9 Nick Phipps, 8 Wycliff Palu, 7 Michael Hooper, 6 Scott Higginbotham, 5 Nathan Sharpe (captain), 4 Sitaleki Timani, 3 Ben Alexander, 2 Tatafu Polota Nau, 1 Benn Robinson. Replacements: 16 James Hanson, 17 James Slipper, 18 Kane Douglas, 19 Dave Dennis, 20 Liam Gill, 21 Brett Sheehan, 22 Drew Mitchell

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