Two debutants for Australia

Date published: January 21 2016

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Australia will hand debuts to young forward Simon Kennewell and speedster John Porch for the third leg of the Sevens World Series in Wellington.

Porch, 24, earned a call-up to the national Sevens squad after impressing in this year's Buildcorp National Rugby Championship for the North Harbour Rays while Sydneysider Kennewell was a member of the Australian squad that won a silver medal in the 2015 Commonwealth Youth Games in Samoa last September.

Back-rower Sam Figg will add to his three World Series caps when he returns to the Sevens arena for the first time since London 2013 having signed a permanent deal with the centralised Australian Sevens program at the start of this year.

Interim Head Coach Scott Bowen has selected a relatively inexperienced squad for the trip to New Zealand's North Island with Henry Hutchison, Boyd Killingworth, Tom Kingston and Stefan Van Der Walt – all debutants this season – picked.

World Series regulars James Stannard, playmaker Allan Fa'alava'au and outside back Greg Jeloudev will also play at Westpac Stadium. Pama Fou (shoulder) and Pat McCutcheon (hamstring) are both unavailable due to injury.

Australia has been drawn in Pool D alongside Kenya, Canada and Portugal at the Wellington Sevens.

New Australian Men's Sevens Head Coach Andy Friend will assume a watching brief in Wellington before taking over the role permanently for the inaugural Sydney 7s the following weekend.

Australia squad for the Wellington Sevens: Henry Hutchison, Tom Kingston, Sam Myers, Tom Lucas, James Stannard, Simon Kennewell, Sam Figg, Greg Jeloudev, Boyd Killingworth, Allan Fa'alava'au, Stephan van der Walt, John Porch.

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