League convert Israel Folau left out of Australia training squad
Last Updated: January 14, 2013 11:33am
Israel Folau: Left out of Wallabies training squad
Rugby league convert Israel Folau has been left out of Australia's 49-man training squad for the 2013 season, which will see the Wallabies face the Lions.
Folau was a league sensation, becoming the youngest man to play for both Queensland and Australia, but he made a surprise code switch to Australian Rules Football in 2011.
Last month he made another code switch, to union with NSW Waratahs, and he was widely expected to be part of the squad.
Western Force back-row star Hugh McMeniman is back in the squad after a four-year absence.
Almost all of the 42 players used in Tests in 2012 are included, the exceptions being Queensland forward Radike Samo and Western Force half-back Brett Sheehan, and Brumbies captain Ben Mowen and Waratahs winger Lachie Turner were both surprise omissions.
There are seven uncapped players in the squad: Melbourne Rebels centre Mitch Inman, Reds flanker Jake Schatz, utility back Ben Lucas, Rebels locks Hugh Pyle and Cadeyrn Neville, and Brumbies half-backs Nic White and Christian Lealiifano.
A Wallabies spokesman played down the significance of the prospective squad.
"It doesn't guarantee them anything," he said. "If you're not here it doesn't mean you're not a Wallaby this year - it comes down to what you do on the field.
"There's nothing to stop Israel Folau going out there and playing the house down to make the team."
Queensland Reds (16): Saia Faingaa, James Hanson, James Slipper, James Horwill, Rob Simmons, Jake Schatz, Liam Gill, Will Genia, Ben Lucas, Quade Cooper, Ben Tapaui, Anthony Faingaa, Mike Harris, Dom Shipperley, Digby Ioane, Luke Morahan.
Waratahs (13): Tatafu Polota-Nau, Benn Robinson, Paddy Ryan, Sekope Kepu, Kane Douglas, Sitaleki Timani, Dave Dennis, Michael Hooper, Wycliff Palu, Berrick Barnes, Rob Horne, Adam Ashley-Cooper, Drew Mitchell.
Brumbies (8): Stephen Moore, Ben Alexander, Dan Palmer, David Pocock, Nic White, Christian Lealiifano, Pat McCabe, Joe Tomane.
Melbourne Rebels (8): Cadeyrn Neville, Hugh Pyle, Scott Higginbotham, Nick Phipps, Kurtley Beale, James O'Connor, Mitch Inman, Cooper Vuna.
Western Force (4): Salesi Ma'afu, Hugh McMeniman, Ben McCalman, Nick Cummins