Jamie George will miss England's November internationals after he was ruled out for 10 weeks with a foot injury.

The hooker will be sidelined until early in December due to damage done in Saracens' Premiership win over Leicester Tigers last Saturday.

George will play no part in the Red Rose's Tests against Argentina, Japan, New Zealand and South Africa.

Eddie Jones had already lost Leicester centre Guy Porter and Harlequins hooker Jack Walker to injury.

Courtney Lawes, Sam Underhill, Anthony Watson, Maro Itoje and Alex Dombrandt are among the other England players who are unavailable due to injury.

Danny Care has been left out of England's training squad ahead of the Autumn Nations Series but Manu Tuilagi and Sam Simmonds return.

Scrum-half Care featured in the Red Rose's series victory over Australia in July, but is not among the 36 players who will report for a three-day camp this weekend.

Centre Tuilagi and number eight Simmonds are back in the fold after recovering from injuries, while pivot Ben Youngs has been selected ahead of the November encounters with Argentina, Japan, New Zealand and South Africa.

Simmonds gets the nod amid reports that he could leave Exeter Chiefs to join Montpellier, a move that would make him ineligible to play for his country.

Locks Alex Coles and Hugh Tizard have been called up for the first time, while Alex Mitchell, Tom Pearson and David Ribbans are also included.

Courtney Lawes and Maro Itoje are among the absentees due to injury.

England head coach Eddie Jones said: "With a year to go to the Rugby World Cup, this is a big opportunity for players to come in and impress. We want them to show real energy and enthusiasm and that they want to be a part of this massive year.

"It doesn't mean that those who have been left out won't be considered for the Autumn Nations Series matches. We'll be looking at club games, form and fitness and the door is left open for those players.

"We finished the Australia tour well. It was a fantastic experience, particularly for the younger players. We now have to start again, but we'll build on what we've done there and continue that momentum."

 

England training squad:

Forwards: Ollie Chessum, Alex Coles, Luke Cowan-Dickie, Tom Curry, Ellis Genge, Jamie George, Joe Heyes, Jonny Hill, Lewis Ludlam, Tom Pearson, David Ribbans, Bevan Rodd, Patrick Schickerling, Sam Simmonds, Will Stuart, Hugh Tizard, Billy Vunipola, Mako Vunipola, Jack Walker, Jack Willis.

Backs: Henry Arundell, Joe Cokanasiga, Fraser Dingwall, Owen Farrell, Tommy Freeman, George Furbank, Will Joseph, Jonny May, Alex Mitchell, Jack Nowelll, Guy Porter, Marcus Smith, Freddie Steward, Manu Tuilagi, Jack van Poortvliet, Ben Youngs.

Ian Foster warned New Zealand have "quite a bit left in this tank" after they retained their Rugby Championship title on Saturday.

The All Blacks thrashed Australia 40-14 at Eden Park on Saturday to put one hand on the trophy and South Africa were unable to dethrone them, beating Argentina 38-21 later in the day when they needed a bonus-point win by a margin of at least 39 points.

Defeats to the Springboks and the Pumas following a home series loss to Ireland had seen Foster come under huge pressure, but the head coach was backed to stay in the role.

The All Blacks boss says there is plenty more to come from his side less than a year before the Rugby World Cup starts in France.

He said on Sunday: "There is still quite a bit left in this tank. We saw that even last night. The building blocks are nice, but there are still a lot of finishing touches we're not quite getting right. But what a great spot to be in.

"It's up to us to make sure they're areas we can now tidy up. Some of the conversion rates in our line-breaks, for example, and I was disappointed we let them back on the scorecard in that last 10 minutes … they're small things but could be important things in 12 months' time."

Foster expressed his pride over the way his players have overcome adversity to win the title.

He said: "It's very special. It's been a different journey to other Rugby Championships we've won. To do it from behind the eight-ball at the start … it's not the way we wanted, but it's very satisfying. I'm really proud of the effort the boys have put in."

Foster added: "In life you don't know what it's going to chuck at you. You can only deal with the situation you're in and no one can walk in those shoes but yourself.

"What have we learnt? That under pressure we stay tight, under pressure we've sought solutions that have made us uncomfortable at times, but the goal is to get the performance right."

Ian Foster says he has "forgotten about the rollercoaster" after New Zealand hammered Australia 40-14 to stand on the brink of retaining the Rugby Championship title.

The All Blacks put their trans-Tasman rivals to the sword in front of a capacity crowd at Eden Park, scoring five tries with Richie Mo'unga booting 13 points.

A resounding victory ensured South Africa need to a bonus-point win over Argentina by at least 39 points to claim the title later on Saturday.

It is not long since Foster was in danger of losing his job, with New Zealand suffering a home series defeat to Ireland before losing to the Springboks and Argentina in the Rugby Championship.

All Blacks head coach Foster said: "I've forgotten about the rollercoaster. I'm just happy in the moment.

"We've come into a championship, we've had, in our mind, the hardest draw by having both tests against South Africa in South Africa, got one out of two in that space, we've let ourselves down in Christchurch [in a defeat to Argentina], but our response to that has been really positive.

"We look at the last half of the championship and we're really pleased with what went in. All we can do is deal with what's in front of us right now.

"I know we've got a buffer [over South Africa] – whether it's enough I don't know. But we've given ourselves a chance and that's all we want."

Foster knows New Zealand remain a work in progress, but he has been impressed with the way they have knuckled down in challenging times.

He added: "All you can do, in the circumstances you get dealt, is try and find a way out of it and I think we've owned very clearly that we put ourselves in a situation. But I back the group we've got to get through an issue.

"I said at the time we're going through stuff that none of us had really gone through in an All Blacks jersey and it was hard. We just had to own it and we had to be the people who came up with the solutions.

"We've done some good problem-solving. We've worked hard, and it's given this team a little bit of steel and it's given us some harsh lessons we kind of wish we didn't have to deal with, but we did.

"In those situations you either fold and walk away because it's too hard, or you buckle up and get stuck into work.

"The work of the players has been phenomenal, and we're growing belief. But we've still got some steps to go."

The final round of Rugby Championship fixtures are upon us and two teams are realistically left standing in the battle to be crowned 2022 champions.

In what has been the most competitive tournament since Argentina joined a decade ago, all four teams have at one point looked good value to finish top.

New Zealand are level with South Africa at the summit, but they have the advantage in terms of the sides' net points difference, which may be used as a deciding factor.

The All Blacks therefore know a bonus-point win over Bledisloe Cup rivals Australia in a repeat of last week's classic will all but land them an eighth title in 10 years.

South Africa play Argentina, the only side entirely out of the running, later on Saturday and will know what they have to do to have a chance – if any – of overtaking New Zealand.

Here, Stats Perform previews the weekend clashes in round six of the championship using Opta data.


NEW ZEALAND v AUSTRALIA

FORM

New Zealand beat Australia 39-37 in last week's thrilling Test in Melbourne through a hugely contentious late try to make it four wins in a row in this fixture – their best such run since winning seven on the bounce between August 2015 and August 2017.

The All Blacks' record on home soil against Australia is even better, having won each of the last 22 Tests in Auckland by an average margin of 18 points per game. The last time Australia got the better of their neighbours in that city was in September 1986.

Australia therefore have a huge task on their hands at Eden Park as they aim to avoid losing three Tests in a row in the Rugby Championship for the first time since September 2013, with this current run following a streak of six wins from their previous seven matches in the competition.

The Wallabies, who need a bonus-point win and would then hope South Africa fail to get the result required against Argentina, will look to exploit any ill-discipline from their rivals. Their goal-kicking accuracy of 92 per cent on place-kicks this year (33/36) is some 11 percentage points higher than any other Tier One nation.

ONES TO WATCH

Will Jordan has made 10 line breaks for New Zealand across 2022, which is the most of any player from a Tier One nation. To put that into some further perspective, it is double the tally of Tom Wright (five), Australia's best performer in that area.

Australia wing Marika Koroibete could hold the key to breaking down the hosts. The 30-year-old has beaten 23 defenders in 2022 – the most of any player from a Tier One nation and two more than New Zealand's best Rieko Ioane.

 

SOUTH AFRICA V ARGENTINA

FORM

Following last week's 36-20 bonus-point triumph in Buenos Aires, South Africa have won their past five Tests against Argentina. However, a win alone may not be enough on Saturday and the Springboks could find themselves going all out for an emphatic victory in pursuit of New Zealand.

The Boks have some much-needed momentum on their side thanks to two wins in a row – matching the number they managed in their previous seven games in the competition – with those victories coming by a margin of exactly 16 points.

Argentina cannot be written off, though, having already defeated New Zealand and Australia during the first half of their championship campaign. Los Pumas have lost back-to-back matches since then, as many as they lost in their six games prior.

Turnovers could be a huge factor in this contest as Argentina and South Africa have won the most of any teams in this year's tournament with 22 apiece, while also making the most and second-most tackles with 706 and 600 respectively.

ONES TO WATCH

Springbok lock Lood de Jager has played a big part for his country this campaign and is second only to Italy's Federico Ruzza for line-outs won among players from Tier One nations in 2022 with 36.

Matias Moroni was among the try scorers for Argentina in last week's loss when finishing off a well-worked set-piece and is among the starters for this latest tussle. He has made dominant contact on seven tackles this year, placing him second only to Italy's Monty Ioane (eight) among elite nations.

Michael Cheika has urged Argentina to rise to the "huge challenge" of tackling world champions South Africa at Kings Park on Saturday.

For the first time, the Pumas could finish a Rugby Championship campaign with wins against all three of their rivals.

A 36-20 loss to the Springboks in Buenos Aires last week saw the Springboks score two late tries after Argentina got within two points heading into the closing minutes.

With wins over Australia and New Zealand already in the bag, Argentina head into their final match in Durban looking to complete the set, although Cheika is reluctant to address what such an achievement would signify.

"We can talk about that if it happens," he said. "We've got objectives and goals, but that's a good discussion to have once it's done. We've got a lot of work to do, a huge challenge in front of us for it to happen.

"We've just got to get in there, get dirty and do our bit, and see where we end up, and we can talk about that stuff after."

Cheika wants to give the Argentinian public something to celebrate after the late disappointment against the South Africans. Argentina came from 22-6 behind to recover to 22-20 last week, before being unable to complete the comeback.

"In relation to where we want to end up as a team, of all the games we've played so far we're probably most disappointed with that one because of the context," Cheika said. "I don't think I've seen a crowd going like that ever, and I want them to go like that this week when they're watching on telly.

"I don't want to go bigger picture here, I just want to say here's an opportunity: full house in Durban against the world champions, a chance to take, we've got to go there and try to take it."

Cheika has made two selection changes, bringing in wing Juan Imhoff and centre Matias Moroni for Lucio Cinti and Matias Orlando. That follows South Africa also making two changes when naming their line-up on Tuesday, with Frans Steyn coming in at fly-half for the injured Damian Willemse, and flanker Pieter Steph du Toit stepping in for Franco Mostert.

Argentina team: Juan Cruz Mallia, Emiliano Boffelli, Matias Moroni, Jeronimo de la Fuente, Juan Imhoff, Santiago Carreras, Gonzalo Bertranou; Nahuel Tetaz Chaparro, Julian Montoya (captain), Eduardo Bello, Matias Alemanno, Tomas Lavanini, Juan Martin Gonzalez, Marcos Kremer, Pablo Matera.

Replacements: Augustin Creevy, Mayco Vivas, Joel Sclavi, Guido Petti, Pedro Rubiolo, Tomas Cubelli, Benjamin Urdapilleta, Bautista Delguy.

South Africa team: Willie le Roux, Canan Moodie, Jesse Kriel, Damian de Allende, Makazole Mapimpi, Frans Steyn, Jaden Hendrikse; Steven Kitshoff, Malcolm Marx, Frans Malherbe, Eben Etzebeth, Lood de Jager, Siya Kolisi (captain), Pieter-Steph du Toit, Jasper Wiese.

Replacements: Bongi Mbonambi, Ox Nche, Vincent Koch, Franco Mostert, Duane Vermeulen, Kwagga Smith, Faf de Klerk, Kurt-Lee Arendse.

Australia lock Darcy Swain has been suspended for six weeks for his reckless clean-out of New Zealand's Quinn Tupaea in last week's Rugby Championship clash.

Swain entered a ruck and made firm contact with the knee of All Blacks centre Tupaea, who suffered a ruptured medial cruciate injury and is facing nine months out.

The 25-year-old was shown a yellow card at the time and was cited after New Zealand's remarkable 39-37 Bledisloe Cup victory at Marvel Stadium in Melbourne.

A SANZAAR Judicial Committee ruled on Wednesday that Swain contravened Law 9.11, which states "players must not do anything that is reckless or dangerous to others".

Swain's ban extends to November 6, ruling him out of this weekend's return match with New Zealand, as well as tour matches against Scotland and France.

He had controversially been selected in Australia A's squad to tour Japan next month, with that seen as a ploy to use up the suspension.

However, by making the ban time-related, rather than match-related, that controversial ploy has been negated.

Asked about Swain's ban on Thursday, All Blacks coach Ian Foster said he was satisfied with the process.

"It is what it is," he said. "We spoke after the game and basically said there's a process that people go through. We're fully aware of that. He's got what he's got.

"I haven't read the judiciary [report], but clearly he's gone through a process and that's what they've come up with."

South Africa moved level on points with New Zealand at the top of the Rugby Championship standings with a 36-20 bonus-point win over Argentina on Saturday.

An ill-disciplined Argentina recovered from 16 points down at half-time to move within two of their opponents and set up a tense conclusion at Estadio Libertadores de America.

But Damian de Allende and Malcolm Marx crossed over late on to add to South Africa's three first-half tries as they made it 29 wins in their 33 Tests with Argentina.

The Springboks welcome Argentina to Durban next weekend, while New Zealand – who boast a better points difference – host Australia with their fate in their own hands.

South Africa fell behind early on to a Emiliano Boffelli penalty, but they hit back through Damian Willemse's successful kick and the opening try followed 10 minutes later.

An offside Santiago Carreras attempted to stop Jaden Hendrikse from grounding the ball and a penalty try was awarded, with the fly-half also being issued a yellow card.

Boffelli moved Argentina back within four points from the boot, but the ball was popped up to Hendrikse and he burst through under the sticks to give the Boks breathing space.

After Willemse added the extras, the visitors pushed on and had a third try through Marx, who crashed over following a sustained spell of pressure.

Argentina's hopes of recovering were further dented when referee James Doleman sin-binned Gonzalo Bertranou after losing patience for a series of infringements.

South Africa could not entirely put the game out of reach and were themselves down to 14 after Willie Le Roux, having already been warned, strayed offside.

Tomas Cubelli appeared to spill the ball when charging through and attempting to touch down, but it was deemed Kwagga Smith illegally intervened and a penalty try was given.

Smith was also yellow carded for that offence, yet it was the Boks who finished strongest as De Allende and Marx added two more tries to seal what seemed an unlikely bonus point.

The penultimate round of Rugby Championship fixtures are upon us and it is all to play for with every side having won two and lost two of their opening four games.

An inconsistent New Zealand side are a point better off than Argentina, South Africa and next opponents Australia by virtue of picking up two bonus points.

Despite a thumping win over Argentina last time out, the pressure still remains on head coach Ian Foster heading into Thursday's contest with great rivals Australia in Melbourne.

The hosts are looking to bounce back from a 16-point loss against South Africa, who make the trip to Buenos Aires in the second of this week's fixtures on Saturday.

Here, Stats Perform previews both clashes in round five of the championship using Opta data.


AUSTRALIA V NEW ZEALAND

FORM

New Zealand may lead the way at the top, but their form this year has been very poor by their usual high standards. The All Blacks have lost four of their seven Tests in 2022 – only in 1998 (five) and 1949 (six) have they ever lost more in a calendar year.

Back-to-back victories would provide a major confidence boost for Foster's charges, and they have a good record in this fixture. Of the past 20 Tests meetings between the sides, New Zealand have won 16 and lost only three, a run that includes three wins in a row.

Australia have not lost back-to-back Tests with New Zealand since August 2017, however, and their return of three wins from their past six matches against the All Blacks on home turf is more than they managed in the previous 13 such encounters.

The Wallabies have won the opening game of the Bledisloe Cup – which New Zealand have dominated for the past two decades – only twice in the past 13 years. However, one of those victories came when they last hosted the opening game three years ago.


PLAYERS TO WATCH

Australia will have to watch their discipline in what is a highly charged fixture. Skipper James Slipper has conceded 11 penalties so far in this year's Rugby Championship, which is four more than any other player in the competition.

All Blacks centre Rieko Ioane continued his good form last time out by scoring a try and setting up another in the 50-point win against Argentina. That could spell bad news for Australia, against whom he has been directly involved in 13 tries across 12 Test appearances.


ARGENTINA V SOUTH AFRICA

FORM

Argentina fell short of registering three wins in a row in this competition for the first time ever when falling heavily to New Zealand two weeks ago. 

Los Pumas will take great confidence from beating Australia last time out at home, though, and are now seeking successive wins on their own patch for the first time since 2012.

South Africa may not be in full flow, but they have won 28 of their 32 Tests against Argentina, including the past four in a row. In fact, only against Italy (93 per cent) do they have a better win percentage than they do against Los Pumas (88 per cent) among teams they have faced at least 10 times.

The Springboks did manage to build a little momentum with their win over Australia two weeks ago, yet that was one of only three victories in their past eight games in the championship after winning six of the previous eight.


PLAYERS TO WATCH

Matias Moroni has put in some strong displays to keep Argentina in the hunt for the title, his five dominant tackles more than any other player in the competition. The centre has also won five turnovers, a tally only Malcolm Marx (six) – who he will face off against this weekend – can better.

South Africa are the lowest points scorers after four rounds of matches. Willie le Roux could hold the key to finding a way through Argentina this weekend as he leads the way for try assists this tournament with three, while also providing six assists in his past six meetings with Argentina.

James Slipper wants Australia to "hurt" after they were consigned to a 24-8 Rugby Championship defeat by South Africa.

The Springboks overpowered the Wallabies at Allianz Stadium on Saturday, outscoring them by four tries to one.

Debutant Canan Moodie, Damian de Allende, Makazole Mapimpi and Franco Mostert crossed as the world champions joined Australia and Argentina on nine points, one behind leaders New Zealand.

Slipper, captain in the absence of Michael Hooper, says Dave Rennie's side should be feeling the pain after they were well beaten in Sydney.

He said: "I want the boys to hurt. Yes, South Africa were good, but I felt like we didn't play much rugby at all.

"We wanted to review last week and be a better rugby team. At no stage should we think we're the finished product.

"Individually we need to look at ourselves. I'm confident we're tracking in the right direction. We just need a bit more polish. We need to execute under pressure."

Australia's next assignment is a Bledisloe Cup opener against the All Blacks on September 15 and Slipper expects them to come back stronger after their hopes of winning the competition took a blow.

"It's tough when you're walking off the field after a loss, but we've got a lot of confidence in the group that we have," he said.

"We're after consistency and that's the big driver for us and when we start seeing that I feel that we'll see success coming our way."

Victory for the Springboks was their first in Australia for nine years and left the battle for the title wide open.

Australia missed the chance to move top of the Rugby Championship standings as they were downed 24-8 by South Africa in Sydney.

The Wallabies ran out 25-17 winners against the same opponents last week, having been in control until a late flurry of Springboks tries.

Yet it was South Africa who made a blistering start this time out, and unlike Australia in Adelaide, they never looked likely to surrender control as they claimed a second win of the campaign.

Damian de Allende dived in under the posts inside 10 minutes, presenting Damian Willemse with a simple conversion.

Matt Philip's yellow card compounded Australia's frustration, though having kept South Africa from capitalising on their numerical advantage, the hosts clawed back three points through Noah Lolesio's penalty.

Australia's hard work was undone before half-time, however – debutant Canan Moodie beating Marika Koroibete to Jaden Hendrikse's hanging kick in midfield and charging over for a maiden Test try.

A slick team move, capped off by Franco Mostert, extended South Africa's lead after the restart, and despite Australia mounting some pressure, the 'Boks kept their hosts at arm's length.

Willie le Roux's drop-goal attempt almost nudged the reigning world champions further ahead, but South Africa had their bonus point when Makazole Mapimpi lunged across in the corner.

Mapimpi's try resulted in a mass fracas, with the try scorer subsequently sin-binned for lashing out at Koroibete.

Francois Steyn added the extras with an excellent long-range conversion, and though Australia got a consolation through Pete Samu and Le Roux saw yellow, South Africa had little trouble in seeing out a big win.

Moodie makes his mark

Handed a debut by coach Jacques Nienaber on the right wing, Moodie made the most of his opportunity with an excellent score at the end of the first half.

The athleticism shown by the 19-year-old was outstanding, with Moodie outjumping Koroibete before sprinting off to the line.

Mapimpi loses his cool

South Africa's fourth try came at the culmination of another excellent passing move, with Le Roux's movement particularly outstanding in the build-up.

Mapimpi held off Koroibete's tackle to finish, but could not help pushing out at his opposite number. Had there been more time left to play, his lapse might have allowed Australia back into the contest.

Ian Foster has backed his New Zealand team to banish their home blues in Saturday's Rugby Championship tussle with Argentina at Waikato Stadium.

The All Blacks have lost their last three Tests at home for the first time in their history, with two defeats to Ireland followed by last week's shock 25-18 loss to Argentina in Christchurch.

They had only lost three times across their prior 73 games on home soil (W67, D3, L3), so this is a crisis and head coach Foster must find a solution.

He has picked an unchanged XV, saying his team have trained well this week and trusting them to deliver a display "everyone can be proud of".

"But we've been pretty ruthless and hard on ourselves behind the scenes," Foster said. "We are hurting with where the team's at."

His belief is that the players who suffered so badly last week should play again, with the purpose of them regaining confidence. That could always backfire.

While New Zealand and Argentina go head to head in Hamilton, Australia and South Africa clash at Sydney's new Allianz Stadium.

Here, Stats Perform previews the weekend clashes in round four of the championship using Opta data.

 

NEW ZEALAND v ARGENTINA

FORM

Foster would surely struggle to ride out the criticism if his team are beaten again by the Pumas, who will be aiming for back-to-back wins in men's Tests against New Zealand for the first time.

New Zealand have lost four of their six Tests in 2022 (W2) and only twice in their history have they lost more in a calendar year (L6 – 1949 and L5 – 1998).

The All Blacks have gained more metres (1,321) and made more offloads (27) than any other team in the Rugby Championship this year, but they have not made the most of those statistical wins.

Argentina are seeking a third consecutive win in the tournament, having never achieved such a run before, and they have the best success rate on lineout throws of any team (90 per cent – 37/41); however, no team have stolen more opposition lineouts in the competition this year than New Zealand (6).

ONES TO WATCH

New Zealand number eight Ardie Savea has made more carries (36) and offloads (6) than any other player in the tournament, while his 24 tackles ranks second among All Blacks (Sam Cane – 30).

Argentina are the kings of the tackle, making 145 tackles per game so far – the most by any team. Marcos Kremer (42), Tomas Lavanini (39), Julian Montoya (38) and Pablo Matera (33) have made more tackles than any other players across all the four competing teams.

AUSTRALIA v SOUTH AFRICA

FORM

The 25-18 win last week in Adelaide means Australia have won each of their last three men's Tests against South Africa after winning just one in six previously (D2, L3). The last time the Wallabies enjoyed a longer winning run against the Springboks was a five-match span from September 2010 to September 2012.

They remain without captain Michael Hooper, who has taken time out to deal with personal matters, but have two wins from three games so far in this competition. They had won just one of five games prior to the Rugby Championship getting under way.

Results in Sydney have not been kind to Australia of late, with just one win coming in their last 10 such games (D1, L8), but they have won their last seven matches on the bounce against South Africa in the city.

World champions South Africa have lost their last two Tests, as many as in their eight games prior (W6, L2). Curiously, the Springboks have led at half-time on the day just twice across that 10-game span.

South Africa have the best scrum success rate (19/22) and have won more scrum penalties (7) than any other team in the championship.

ONES TO WATCH

South Africa will be without key centre Lukhanyo Am who has made more line breaks – six – than any other player in this year's Rugby Championship. Jesse Kriel is set to take over from Am in midfield.

In wing Makazole Mapimpi, the Boks at least have the player next on that list with five line breaks. Eight changes to the Boks starting line-up have come about due to injuries and form, with the visitors looking to step up a level after last week's disappointment.

Australia have named an unchanged XV, and Fraser McReight's two tries in Adelaide make him a player to watch. Len Ikitau has made 11 tackle breaks in the campaign so far, the joint-most of any player in the campaign (also Rieko Ioane – 11 for New Zealand).

Michael Hooper does not figure in Australia's plans for the rest of the Rugby Championship, coach Dave Rennie said on Thursday.

Captain Hooper pulled out of the Wallabies team for the series opener against Argentina at the start of August, citing personal reasons, and travelled home from South America.

He said he was unable "to fulfil my responsibilities at the moment in my current mindset", and Australia will not rush Hooper back.

Rennie said: "I've had plenty of contact with Hoops. I'm not going to comment on where he's at and what that looks like. We're not looking to include him in the rest of the Rugby Championship.

"We'll make decisions beyond that, but certainly not looking to rush him in. But he's certainly on the improve."

In Hooper's continuing absence, Australia's starting XV will be unchanged for Saturday's tussle with South Africa at Sydney's new Allianz Stadium, following a 25-17 win over the Springboks last weekend in Adelaide. Jake Gordon, the Waratahs captain, joins the replacements.

Australia and Argentina lead the way in the championship with two wins and one loss each. The Wallabies will wrap up their campaign with home and away games against the All Blacks.

Rennie said: "While rapt with last week's effort, we're well aware of the challenge a wounded Springbok poses and the intensity we will require again on Saturday night."

South Africa named their team on Tuesday, making eight changes, including bringing in Canan Moodie for a debut on the wing.


Wallabies team: Reece Hodge, Tom Wright, Len Ikitau, Hunter Palsami, Marika Koroibete, Noah Lolesio, Nic White; James Slipper (captain), Folau Fainga'a, Allan Alaalatoa, Rory Arnold, Matt Philip, Jed Holloway, Fraser McReight, Rob Valetini.

Replacements: David Porecki, Scott Sio, Taniela Tupou, Darcy Swain, Rob Leota, Pete Samu, Jake Gordon, Andrew Kellaway.

South Africa team: Willie le Roux, Canan Moodie, Jesse Kriel, Damian de Allende, Makazole Mapimpi, Damian Willemse, Jaden Hendrikse; Steven Kitshoff, Malcolm Marx, Frans Malherbe, Eben Etzebeth, Lood de Jager, Siya Kolisi (captain), Franco Mostert, Jasper Wiese.

Replacements: Deon Fourie, Ox Nche, Trevor Nyakane, Kwagga Smith, Duane Vermeulen, Cobus Reinach, Frans Steyn, Warrick Gelant.

Beauden Barrett is fit to return for New Zealand when they go in search of revenge against Argentina on Saturday.

Barrett missed the Pumas' first-ever away victory over the All Blacks last weekend due to a neck injury, but he is back in contention for the Rugby Championship clash at FMG Stadium Waikato.

The two-time World Rugby Player of the Year said: "I'm feeling really good, sun's on the back, beautiful Hamilton day, and good to get a full training under my belt, too."

He quipped: "I've realised that I've got to get a neck like a front rower to be able to handle these knocks, so I've been working hard on it in the gym with Pete [All Blacks physio Pete Gallagher].

"A few more shoulder-on tackles, and I'd say I'm just about ready to go."

The All Blacks have lost four out of six Tests this year and are third in the Rugby Championship table after their historic loss to Michael Cheika's men in round three.

Barrett says the All Blacks will stick with their principles but are prepared to adapt.

"We don’t want to be like other teams," he added. "We've still got to be the expressive All Blacks that we know we can be.

"When the pressure comes on, we want to run the ball, keep it in hand, it's just what feels so natural to us.

"We've identified that in games that we’ve lost, we may need to kick the ball a little bit more, it seems unnatural, but it's just being aware of that.

"And looking to attack in different ways – everyone on our feet, chasing kicks, getting those 50-50 bounces or flooding rucks and looking for turnovers that way. We are figuring out the way that we want to play."

Ian Foster backed captain Sam Cane but knows New Zealand are "under the spotlight" after they suffered a historic Rugby Championship defeat to Argentina on Saturday.

The Pumas moved to the top of the standings with their first away victory over the All Blacks, winning 25-18 in Christchurch.

While Michael Cheika's side were on cloud nine, the All Blacks crashed back down to earth after lifting the gloom with a win over South Africa at Ellis Park.

New Zealand head coach Foster was informed he would keep his job through to the Rugby World Cup in France next year following the win over the Springboks, but questions are being asked about his future again.

Cane has also come under fire and Foster hauled him off after he showed indiscipline to gift Argentina a penalty by tackling Pablo Matera without the ball 14 minutes from time, with Emiliano Boffelli punishing him by extending the lead to seven points.

Foster said: "Clearly he [Cane] is under the spotlight. We are all under the spotlight when things don't go well. But behind the scenes, [Cane is] strong.

"I thought a lot of his tackle and work around the breakdown was a big shift up in the last two games, and we are pleased with that.'"

Foster said he would be speaking to Cane about his hit on Matera.

He added: "Yeah, no doubt about that. We will work through all that. It's probably reflective of a team that's trying really, really hard and is close and not quite there."

There was good news for the All Blacks on Sunday, when Brodie Retallick was cleared to join the squad in Hamilton after recovering from a broken cheekbone.

Defeat for holders New Zealand was their fourth in six Tests this year and left them third in the table behind the Pumas and Australia.

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