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While the Wallabies will head into this fixture as favourites to emerge with victory, Fiji will be just as eagerly be eyeing up a shock win over their Pacific neighbours.
The Flying Fijians haven’t tasted success against the Australians since 1954, but the side that head coach John McKee has named suggests that 66-year drought could be in jeopardy if his side can fire on all cylinders under the roof of Sapporo Dome.
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He, alongside fellow loose forwards Peceli Yato and Viliame Mata, have been tasked with the unenviable job of shutting down Australia’s fierce-looking back row, which consists of injury returnee David Pocock, the Fijian-born Isi Naisarani and captain Michael Hooper.
Wallabies head coach Michael Cheika has also reinstated Nic White and Christian Lealiifano as his halves combo, while Fijians Marika Koroibete and Samu Kerevi will be expected to wreak havoc against their nation of birth.
The @wallabies have set themselves the target of winning this year's @rugbyworldcup, but @fijirugby will have a big say about that in their opening clash in Sapporo on Saturday. #RWC2019 https://t.co/DiNnB28ihO
— RugbyPass (@RugbyPass) September 20, 2019
The match is scheduled to kick-off at 1:45pm local time.
1. Scott Sio, 2. Tolu Latu, 3. Allan Alaalatoa, 4. Izack Rodda, 5. Rory Arnold, 6. David Pocock, 7. Michael Hooper, 8. Isi Naisarani, 9. Nic White, 10. Christian Lealiifano, 11. Marike Koroibete, 12. Samu Kerevi, 13. James O’Connor, 14. Reece Hodge, 15. Kurtley Beale.
Reserves: 16. Jordan Uelese, 17. James Slipper, 18. Sekope Kepu, 19. Adam Coleman, 20. Lukhan Salakaia-Loto, 21. Will Genia, 22. Matt Toomua, 23. Dane Haylett-Petty.
1. Campese Ma’afu, 2. Sam Matavesi, 3. Peni Ravai, 4. Tevtia Cavubati, 5. Leone Nakarawa, 6. Dominiko Waqaniburotu, 7. Peceli Yato, 8. Viliame Mata, 9. Frank Lomani, 10. Ben Volavola, 11. Semi Radradra, 12. Levani Botia, 13. Waisea Nayacalevu, 14. Josua Tuisova, 15. Kini Murimurivalu.
Reserves: 16. Tuvere Vugatoko, 17. Eroni Mawi, 18. Manasa Saulo, 19. Tevita Ratuva, 20. Mosese Voka, 21. Nikola Matawalu, 22. Alivereti Veitokani, 23. Vereniki Goneva.
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