FILE - Wallabies lock Will Skelton. Photo: Benoit Tessier/Reuters
FILE - Wallabies lock Will Skelton. Photo: Benoit Tessier/Reuters

Will Skelton puts 'hand up' for Wallabies selection after reported rule change

By AFP Time of article published Sep 29, 2021

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La Rochelle lock Will Skelton said he would welcome a return to the Test set-up after reports that Rugby Australia might be set to loosen eligibility rules on overseas-based players.

According to the Sydney Morning Herald, the Wallabies want to recall the France-based 29-year-old as well as Toulouse second-row Rory Arnold and Stade Francais hooker Tolu Latu for the upcoming end-of-year internationals.

Australia coach Dave Rennie has already made three exemptions to the rule, with overseas players only eligible after 60 caps or sevens years of Super Rugby, for the ongoing Rugby Championship.

Tokyo Sungoliath pair Samu Kerevi and Sean McMahon as well as Toulon centre Duncan Paia'aua have been part of Rennie's squad this season, which has included two wins over Rugby World Cup winners South Africa.

Skelton last featured for his country in 2016 before joining English club Saracens from the Waratahs.

"Obviously, not being eligible is tough, not being able to put your hand up to play," Skelton told AFP this week.

"If the opportunity does come along I'll definitely put my hand up. You can see how well they're playing at the moment and you miss that environment, the international field.

"You almost ask yourself if you've still got it and good enough. You want to test yourself against the best. It would be awesome to link up. If it happens, it happens," he added.

Rennie’s side face Argentina on Saturday in their final game of the Rugby Championship.

They then head play Japan in Oita on October 23 before making the trip to Europe to take on Scotland on November 7, followed by England and Wales on successive weekends.

The Top 14 season clashes with just two of those games: the trip to Oita and the clash at Murrayfield.

AFP

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