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Betham replaces Speight in Wallabies squad

Aap
Friday, August 01, 2014

BRISBANE, - Henry Speight's torn hamstring won't delay the Fijian flyer's long-awaited Wallabies debut but has further exposed Australia's specialist wing depth.

NSW Waratahs reserve Peter Betham has replaced Speight in the 32-man squad for the start of The Rugby Championship after he was ruled out for a month.

Although diagnosed with a grade two tear, the red-hot Brumbies winger is expected to return to action before he finally becomes available for Australia on September 11.

"It's disappointing for Henry but I've got no doubt that he'll go back and work hard during the rehab process to get his injury healed before he becomes eligible," said coach Ewen McKenzie.

The Wallabies had hoped to have the tackle-shedding star in their colours this time last year but eligibility dramas have pushed his likely debut back to September 13 against Argentina on the Gold Coast.

Speight, who sustained the injury in the second half of Saturday night's Super Rugby semi-final loss to the Waratahs, had been one of just two specialist wingers in Australia's squad.