Rugby Championship: Australia call up Peter Betham for Henry Speight
Last Updated: 31/07/14 5:22am
Peter Betham, in action for the Waratahs, is called up by Australia
Peter Betham has replaced injured Henry Speight in Australia's squad ahead of the forthcoming Rugby Championship.
Winger Speight will be out of action for a month after sustaining a hamstring injury in last Saturday’s Super Rugby semi-final between ACT Brumbies and New South Wales Waratahs.
"It's disappointing for Henry but I've got no doubt that he'll go back and work hard during the rehab process to get his injury healed before he becomes eligible to play for Australia."
McKenzie on Speight
Fijian-born Speight had been a surprise inclusion in the 32-man squad despite not being eligible to play for Australia – on residency grounds – until September 11, by which time the Wallabies would have played three of their six matches in the competition.
Betham, whose only cap came against New Zealand last year, has himself just recovered from a broken foot.
Australia's coach Ewen McKenzie said: "It's disappointing for Henry but I've got no doubt that he'll go back and work hard during the rehab process to get his injury healed before he becomes eligible to play for Australia.
"On the flip side, we bring in a guy in Peter Betham. He's a quality team member on and off the field and will be determined to make the most of the opportunity he has been given."
Australia open their Rugby Championship campaign with back-to-back Tests against New Zealand in Sydney (August 16) and Auckland (August 23).
Their other matches are against South Africa (September 6 & 27) and Argentina (September 13 & October 4).