Brent Tate in for Kangaroos as Sheens rings changes

20 November 2013 7:30 PM

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Brent Tate in for Kangaroos as Sheens rings changes

Brent Tate has won the vacant left centre berth in the Australian team to play Fiji in Saturday's World Cup semi-final at Wembley Stadium, with Kangaroos coach Tim Sheens omitting Josh Morris and Michael Jennings from a 19-man squad.

Sheens is yet to finalise the make-up of his team but he has confirmed that Morris, Jennings and Sydney Roosters backrower Boyd Cordner will join injured fullback Billy Slater on the sidelines.

As a result, Greg Inglis will switch to fullback in place of Slater, Tate will take his left centre spot and Darius Boyd has retained his place on the wing.

The selections again leave the Kangaroos with no cover for an injury in the outside backs and Sheens had considered using Tate on the interchange with either Morris or Jennings to start in the centres after the loss of Slater against USA last weekend exposed a potential problem weakness in the Australian side.

While the Kangaroos won 62-0, the Tomahawks targeted Daly Cherry-Evans in defence and Sheens was forced to shift Greg Bird to the centres after Inglis moved to fullback.

Sheens had also spoken to Jennings about playing on the wing but he has decided to stick with the same backline.

Back-up hooker Robbie Farah and forward Nate Myles are the other new faces in the squad and Sheens is deciding whether to recall Farah as the bench utility ahead of Cherry-Evans.

The decision effectively means Morris, Jennings and Cordner are now unlikely to play again in the World Cup unless there are further injuries, with Slater still hoping to overcome his knee injury to play in next week's final at Old Trafford.

"Obviously you are disappointed that you are not playing and you don't wish for injuries but when one comes along you hope you are in the right position and you are doing the right things to get picked," Morris said.

"I suppose it is a competition between the three of us but we spent the week together training as Emus and you form close bonds with each other," he said.

"You want to play in any Test for Australian, especially a World Cup semi-final at Wembley. I was an Emu the last time we played there in 2011 as well so I would like to get a shot to play there at some stage."


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