Wallabies release 12 players for NRC duty

The Wallabies have released 12 Test squad players to play in the opening round of Australia’s National Rugby Championship in a bid to add to their game time.

Star centre Samu Kerevi is set to line up in what will be a stacked Brisbane City back-line against the Fijian Drua this weekend at Ballymore.

Kerevi started at 13 in the opening Bledisloe Cup Test, but was left out of the team in Dunedin after a disappointing performance, with Wallabies coach Michael Cheika saying the 23-year-old was yet to return to full fitness after an injury-affected season.

The Queensland Red is no stranger to the NRC, having played for Brisbane City in 2014 and 2015, when they won back-to-back titles.

Brisbane City already boast Nick Frisby and Quade Cooper as their halves and Kerevi’s return only makes their attack look more threatening, against the Fiji Drua on Saturday.

Loose forward Adam Korczyk and lock Kane Douglas will also be released to play for City.

Last weekend’s Test debutant Izack Rodda could feature for Queensland Country, along with speedster Isaia Perese, with the pair heading back to the provincial competition on Saturday.

They could find themselves up against Brumbies halfback and third-choice Wallabies nine Joe Powell, who will be in the mix for the Vikings.

Sunday’s Perth Spirit vs Melbourne Rising game could see as many as six Wallabies squad players in action, with Tetera Faulkner, Curtis Rona and Billy Meakes in the Spirit side, while Jordan Uelese, Lopeti Timani and Marika Koroibete will be in contention for the Rising.

The Wallabies have all returned to their home states this week, before they reconvene in Perth on Sunday evening, ahead of a September 9 clash with South Africa.

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