Wallabies coach Robbie Deans expects plenty of competition from Scotland in next month's Test season opener in Newcastle.
Deans, who is visiting Newcastle today to hold a skills session to help promote the city’s debut as an international Test rugby venue, says Scotland can never be written off.
"While Scotland is coming off a disappointing Six Nations, they are a team that has traditionally punched above their weight internationally, especially when under-rated," the Wallabies coach said.
"We experienced that three years ago in Edinburgh [Australia lost 8-9] and will not be taking for granted the threat that they pose."
Deans will name a training on squad which features Reds and Western Force players on Monday, May 28. Those players, who have the bye during the Super Rugby round on the weekend of June 1-2, will assemble to train in Sydney on May 28.
The Wallabies starting XV to play Scotland, along with its back-ups, will now be named on Sunday, June 3, after the Australian sides have completed their commitments in that weekend’s Super Rugby, which concludes with the Waratahs-Hurricanes game in Sydney the evening before.
The announcement has been put back a day, so the selectors have all of the information available to them - mainly on the injury front - before they finalise their combinations.
Deans says this process is to ensure that Australia fields "a strong combination capable of winning what will be a tough Test match."
Deans has a long association with Scottish rugby which stretches back to 1983, when he made his All Black Test debut against the Scots, in a tight game which finished in a 25-25 draw.
Three years ago, as Wallabies coach, he saw his Australian side beaten 8-9 at Murrayfield in a match which won for Scotland the Hopetoun Cup for the first time.
That trophy will be on the line again next month, as Hunter Stadium in Newcastle becomes just the seventh venue in Australia to host a Wallabies Test match.
"It's going to be great to be playing a Test at home again after having limited opportunities last year [due to the impact of the Rugby World Cup]," Deans said.
"It's also exciting to be playing at a new venue - in Newcastle, where the Wallabies haven't appeared before. I've spent a bit of time in the city this year, am heading up there again this morning, and the excitement of the local community to be hosting this match is clear."
Next month's visit is the seventh by the Scottish national team to Australia.
There have been 10 Tests on the previous six visits, with Australia winning nine and Scotland one. This tally includes the quarterfinal of the 2003 Rugby World Cup which Australia won 33-16 in Brisbane.
Scotland's win occurred in the first Test of the 1982 series, with a 12-7 result in Brisbane.
The Scotland side is coached by the former England Test player and coach Andy Robinson, who was Clive Woodward's chief assistant with the Rugby World Cup-winning England team, in Australia in 2003.
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