BRISBANE, - World-class flanker David Pocock is set to bolster the Wallabies on next month's European tour but won't regain the captaincy from veteran lock Nathan Sharpe.
Coach Robbie Deans on Sunday revealed he expected Pocock, sidelined for two months following knee surgery, would return on the four-Test tour to set up an intriguing selection battle with young gun Michael Hooper.
Hooper was again one of Australia's best players in their surprise 18-all draw with the All Blacks on Saturday night to lodge a strong case to keep the No.7 jersey.
While Pocock isn't likely to be fit to start the opening November 10 clash with France, his availability is a major boost for the inexperienced and injury-ravaged Wallabies.
However first-choice captain James Horwill won't be among the 30-man squad to be announced Thursday or Friday after suffering a recent setback in his rehabilitation from hamstring surgery.
Although Sharpe was Australia's fourth-choice skipper this season, Deans confirmed the 34-year-old would keep the captaincy reins ahead of Pocock due to his inspirational leadership in the past four Tests.