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Deans coy on O'Connor

Australia boss Robbie Deans refused to confirm whether James O'Connor would reclaim his spot on the right wing for the World Cup opener against Italy on Sunday.

Deans insists the selectors have chosen their matchday 22 but said it would not be revealed until Tuesday, after they had landed in Auckland.

O'Connor is eligible for selection after serving his one-match ban for failing to attend last month's official World Cup squad announcement.

"We're clear in our minds and we've done a fair amount of work obviously, but (the 22-man squad) will be communicated tomorrow," Deans said.

He added when pressed on O'Connor's prospects: "You'll have to wait, you know our policies. But obviously he is a possibility this week where he wasn't last week."

Skipper James Horwill believes the Wallabies possess the squad to win the Webb Ellis Cup but insists complacency won't be a factor against Nick Mallett's Italy.

He said: "I think every day we assemble as a group we have the belief that we can do it, but it's not just going to happen. We have to go out there and play to our best to win, and that's our focus and that's what we've been building towards.

"We haven't even spoken about any sort of complacency. It's business as usual, we've got a Test match on Sunday and it's the first game to, I guess, send a message of what we're about.

"Looking at the game that they've played so far this year, in the forwards especially, they're very physical and they like that style of game and like to try and mess up your breakdown, so that's something we have to be wary of.

"Their scrum is exceptionally good, so we've spent a lot of time as a forward pack focusing on that because they like that side of the game."


From Belfast Telegraph