Wallabies coach Dave Rennie has made three changes to the starting XV for the side’s Tri-Nations showdown against Argentina in Newcastle on Saturday night.

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Veteran prop Scott Sio comes straight in for the injured James Slipper at loosehead prop, alongside hooker Brandon Paenga-Amosa and the damaging Taniela Tupou who starts for the second time this Test season in the number three jersey.

Rob Simmons is set to play his 105th Test for the Wallabies at McDonald Jones Stadium, partnering the ever-improving Matt Philip in the second row.

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The panel of the Aotearoa Rugby Pod discuss their Australian Vintage Wine Moment To Savour from the Tri-Nations/Rugby Championship match between Los Pumas and the All Blacks.

The dynamic Ned Hanigan will start at blindside flanker in the third and final change to the starting team, joined in the backrow by skipper Michael Hooper and impressive young number eight, Harry Wilson.

Scone-born Nic White will get his first chance to play for his country in the Hunter Valley, partnering with Reece Hodge who retains the number 10 jersey after steering the side to a win over New Zealand in Brisbane. Reds pair Hunter Paisami and Jordan Petaia get another chance to combine in the midfield, at inside and outside centre respectively.

After scoring with his first touch in international rugby, Tom Wright will again start on the wing with Marika Koroibete and Tom Banks rounding out an unchanged backline in Newcastle.

Folau Fainga’a and last Test debutant Angus Bell will again be called upon as cover in the front row, along with Brumbies skipper Allan Alaalatoa.

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The versatile Rob Valetini will cover both the second and the back row with Queensland captain Liam Wright the other forward cover.

Waratahs number nine Jake Gordon returns to the matchday 23 for the first time since Auckland and is joined by young playmaker Noah Lolesio and the electric Filipo Daugunu as the replacement backs.

Wallabies coach Dave Rennie said: “After being left out in our last Test we got the reaction we expected from Scott, his preparation this week has been excellent and his experience will be invaluable against Argentina.”

“As a group, we know respect is earned daily and understand the importance of backing up our last performance with another quality effort on Saturday night.

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“The tournament is evenly poised and our fate is in our own hands. We saw how much passion Argentina play with in their performance last weekend and we’re excited by the challenge in Newcastle.”

Wallabies team to play Argentina at McDonald Jones Stadium, Newcastle on Saturday 21 November, 7:45pm AEDT
1. Scott Sio (66 Tests)

2. Brandon Paenga-Amosa (7 Tests)

3. Taniela Tupou (23 Tests)

4. Rob Simmons (104 Tests)

5. Matt Philip (7 Tests)

6. Ned Hanigan (23 Tests)

7. Michael Hooper (c) (103 Tests)

8. Harry Wilson (4 Tests)

9. Nic White (35 Tests)

10. Reece Hodge (43 Tests)

11. Marika Koroibete (32 Tests)

12. Hunter Paisami (4 Tests)

13. Jordan Petaia (6 Tests)

14. Tom Wright (1 Test)

15. Tom Banks (9 Tests)

Replacements

16. Folau Fainga’a (14 Tests)

17. Angus Bell (1 Test)

18. Allan Alaalatoa (39 Tests)

19. Rob Valetini (2 Tests)

20. Liam Wright (4 Tests)

21. Jake Gordon (3 Tests)

22. Noah Lolesio (2 Tests)

23. Filipo Daugunu (4 Tests)

– Rugby Australia

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