Rob Simmons will the Wallabies' chief lineout caller against Ireland.
Rob Simmons will the Wallabies' chief lineout caller against Ireland. Alastair Grant

Cheika hoping tall timber can get the wood on Ireland

RUGBY UNION: Dean Mumm knows he will have a huge role to play in trying to prevent Ireland getting the jump on him and his Wallabies on Sunday morning (AEST) in Dublin.

Mumm has been recalled to Michael Cheika's starting side as it braces for an all-out assault from the dangerous Irish lineout.

Devin Toner, the host's 210cm lineout master and key to Ireland's stunning upset of the All Blacks three weeks ago in Chicago, looms large, along with fellow towering lock Iain Henderson (198cm).

Mumm is a noted lineout target and replaces the hard-running Lopeti Timani in the back row as the only non-injury-enforced change to the Wallabies side that beat Scotland a fortnight ago.

Mumm described the Ireland lineout as "tremendous” and "one of the best in world rugby at the moment”.

"It's also a springboard for the way they want to play. A lot of their attack and structures are based on a very successful lineout,” Mumm said.

"It's a massive challenge for us collectively as a lineout.”

Henderson comes in to replace veteran Donnacha Ryan.

"There's a physicality they want to bring to the game ... that's certainly something he can bring,” Mumm said.

Mumm will start at openside flanker, with David Pocock back at No.8 to partner Michael Hooper in the loose forwards.

"Timani has done absolutely nothing wrong, (but) we want to focus a little bit more on our lineout this week and the threat that Ireland might pose there,” Cheika said. "Dean brings a lot of experience and quality in that area.

"But then we'll probably lose a bit of Lopeti's ball-carrying too. It's six of one, half a dozen of the other, but we decided that was probably an important thing for this game and that's how we'll run.”

Cheika has put the heat on Rob Simmons, who retains his spot in the side as chief lineout caller after replacing the injured Adam Coleman last weekend in Paris when Australia overcame France 25-23. Coleman has flown home for surgery.

"It's not just (the lineout calling), I think Simmons is starting to understand that he needs to play the game more physically,” Cheika said.

"He's got huge potential. I know he's been around for a while but I think that guy has got so much potential.

"He's starting to change his mindset towards thinking about playing the game like that.”

The Wallabies are also preparing for Ireland's usual tactic of holding ball carriers up, which helped it win two of the last three Tests against Australia.

"It's tough because they'll target our tall guys when we run and we've got some tall timber there,” Cheika said.

"We'll have to be really good with how we present the carry. It's hard to say what we want to do without giving it away but we're definitely (aware) because they're so good at it. They've been good at it for quite a few years.

"It's a consistent feature of their game and it wins them a few turnovers a match and can be very frustrating for their opponents.

"You've got to have a really clear tactic on how you can beat it. But you can't focus on it too much otherwise you forget about the rest of the stuff you need to do.”

Wallabies: 15 Israel Folau 14 Dane Haylett-Petty 13 Tevita Kuridrani 12 Reece Hodge 11 Henry Speight 10 Bernard Foley 9 Will Genia 8 David Pocock 7 Michael Hooper 6 Dean Mumm 5 Rob Simmons 4 Rory Arnold 3 Sekope Kepu 2 Stephen Moore (captain) 1 Scott Sio. Reserves: 16 Tolu Latu 17 James Slipper 18 Allan Alaalatoa 19 Kane Douglas 20 Lopeti Timani 21 Sean McMahon 22 Nick Phipps 23 Quade Cooper 24 Sefanaia Naivalu (one to be omitted).


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