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Published: 10:06 | 8/7/19

O'Connor set to join up with Wallabies

James O'Connor is in line for a return to the Wallabies squad after flying out to join up with the panel in South Africa.

O'Connor is keen to return to the national set-up ahead of this year's Rugby World Cup in Japan and he is reported to be in talks with the Queensland Reds, with a deal likely to be in place before the Wallabies face the Springboks in their Rugby Championship opener on Saturday, 19 July.

While he has yet to sign a new contract with Rugby Australia, the 29-year-old has flown to South Africa to train with the squad in place of winger Marika Koroibete, who has remained in Melbourne for the birth of his second child.

“Marika (Koroibete) should join us later in the week, but mother nature is in charge here, so until then it’s a good opportunity for James to integrate into the team playing principles,” said Wallabies head coach Michael Cheika.

David Pocock will also travel to Johannesburg to link-up with the squad.

Pocock was not included in the 34-man squad for the Rugby Championship opener as he continues to recover from a persistent calf injury, but Cheika is keen to have him work on his rehabilitation with the medical team.

“For David, we really want to do some specific rehab work with him and it’s just better to have him with us at this stage to ensure we get his return to play exactly right,” said Cheika.

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