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Thursday, November 4, 1999 Published at 13:29 GMT

Wallabies unchanged for final

Australia: "Selecting the team has been relatively easy"

Fly-half Stephen Larkham, captain John Eales and flanker Matt Cockbain have been passed fit as Australia name an unaltered line-up to face France in the World Cup final at the Millennium Stadium.

The only change is on the bench where prop Dan Crowley comes in for Rod Moore to provide "more mobility" against the free-running French.

Coach Rod Macqueen said: "Selecting the team has been relatively easy right through the World Cup. The only hard thing has been telling players like Tiaan Strauss for instance, who contributed so much for us against Wales, that he wasn't in the 22.

"But I think that's indicative of the sort of depth in the squad."

The Australians have had to do a lot of recovering in a short space of time following their bruising epic 27-21 semi-final victory over reigning champions South Africa.

There were question marks over key members of the squad, particularly Larkham, who dropped a crucial goal in extra time to put his side through, but injured his knee during the match.

Macqueen said: "We wouldn't risk anyone for such an important game unless they were fully fit."

The Wallabies squad has three players from their World Cup winning side that beat England 12-6 in the 1991 final. Eales and centre Tim Horan are in the starting line-up, while back Jason Little is on the bench.


15 Matthew Burke; 14 Ben Tune, 13 Daniel Herbert, 12 Tim Horan, 11 Joe Roff; 10 Stephen Larkham, 9 George Gregan; 8 Toutai Kefu, 7 David Wilson, 6 Matt Cockbain, 5 John Eales (captain), 4 David Giffin, 3 Andrew Blades, 2 Michael Foley, 1 Richard Harry.
Replacements: 16 Jason Little, 17 Nathan Grey, 18 Chris Whitaker, 19 Mark Connors, 20 Owen Finegan, 21 Dan Crowley, 22 Jeremy Paul.

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