Rob Horne is back in the Wallabies squad.
Rob Horne is back in the Wallabies squad. PAUL MILLER

Horne given second chance for Wallabies

WALLABIES coach Michael Cheika said Rob Horne's experience would make up for the absence of Samu Kerevi and Nick Phipps after the duo was ruled out of the June Test matches with Fiji, Italy and Scotland.

Centre Horne, who is headed for Europe, was left out of Cheika's original 34-man squad but was recalled after Serevi injured his ankle playing for the Queensland Reds in the defeat to the Blues on Friday night in Samoa.

Halfback Nick Phipps, who also has an ankle injury, will be replaced by Waratahs teammate Jake Gordon, who becomes the ninth uncapped player in the squad.

The pair joined Wallabies in Melbourne yesterday, with Cheika saying Horne was a handy replacement.

"Rob has been a strong leader in our Wallabies environment and his experience will be invaluable in this relatively inexperienced squad," he said.

"We really want to put a strong emphasis on leadership in this team and we have some young leaders in this squad who are continuing to develop."

"It's really unfortunate for Samu and Nick but a great opportunity for Jake and Rob to come into the squad."

The 52-cap veteran Phipps injured his ankle in the Waratahs' defeat to the Highlanders in Dunedin in their last Super Rugby clash.

Cheika was disappointed to lose Phipps but welcomed Gordon to the squad.

"Jake was involved in our camp in Canberra earlier this year and has really stepped up for the Waratahs in Super Rugby," he said.

"He's another uncapped player but it will be good to expose him to the Test environment."

News Corp Australia

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