Rugby Championship

Australia want to host Rugby Championship "hub"

After a two-month lockdown to contain the spread of COVID-19, Australian authorities have allowed sports to restart domestic competition but international fixtures remain in doubt due to travel curbs and border controls.

"We're exploring with the Australian government whether that can be a bubble here in Australia and we fly in all of the SANZAAR partners and they are in a training bubble and then we can quarantine effectively and play a competition," RA interim CEO Rob Clarke said on Tuesday.

Squire opens up about physical and mental health

Before the Rugby Championship the Highlanders loosie told All Blacks coach Steve Hansen he wasn't ready for Test rugby and this week he was left out of the World Cup squad.

On social media Squire has opened up about what he's been going through, saying he didn't feel "physically or mentally" ready for the pressures of test rugby.

Mid-season "catch-ups" helping build Test bonds: Sio

But the Wallabies’ pack must apply consistency back up their performance against the All Blacks in Perth next week, or risk losing the positive impact on their reputation as scrummagers.

After sitting out the Johannesburg Test with injury, Sio’s return in Brisbane to a front row also containing Folau Faingaa and Sekope Kepu helped the Wallabies scrum turn in a dominant show over the Pumas.

Encouragingly for coach Michael Cheika, the dominance continued when the bench front rowers were rolled out in the second half; James Slipper, Taniela Tupou and Tolu Latu.

Aaron Cruden tipped to return from France

Cruden quit New Zealand rugby in 2017 for a three-year deal with Top 14 club Montpellier worth a reported $3.6 million.

The 30-year-old first five-eighth has signed on again - but only until November - as a 'medical joker' to cover the club until the end of the Rugby World Cup tournament in Japan.

A Planet Rugby report claimed Cruden - a former Chiefs captain - could be a target for the Hurricanes, who have lost All Blacks star Beauden Barrett to the Blues.

Wallabies secure important win as All Black challenges loom

The Wallabies' scrum dominated the Pumas' and player of the match Will Genia, Kurtley Beale and comeback king Christian Leali'ifano put on an assured kicking display not seen for a long time from an Australian Test team.

Most pleasing was Australia's defence, keeping the Pumas try-less until the 74th minute with disciplined, patient defence in front of an appreciative 31,559 crowd at the iconic Brisbane ground.

"Really pleasing, we love coming up here ... really pleased with our play and how we bounced back from a short week's turnaround," captain Michael Hooper said.

Lealiifano, O'Connor named for Wallabies returns

Lealiifano, 31, is set for his first Australia appearance since June 2016, having returned to form with the Brumbies after a battle with leukaemia.

While Lealiifano was named to start at fly-half for the Wallabies in the Rugby Championship clash in Brisbane on Saturday, O'Connor is among the reserves.

O'Connor has played 44 Tests for the Wallabies, but the last of those was in September 2013, also against Argentina.

Pumas name overseas-based duo for Test comebacks in Brisbane

Isa, who plays for Toulon, will start for the first time since 2016 when he runs out at no. 8 for Argentina this weekend, replacing Javier Ortega Desio in the starting lineup.

Exeter's Cordero will start on the wing, set to potentially go up against current Premiership teammate Nic White in Saturday's Suncorp Stadium clash.

Cordero's comeback pushes Matias Moroni into outside centre with Matias Orlando coming off the bench.

Prepare for fiery All Blacks-Springbok clash

The tactical cat and mouse that comes with most lead-in Tests to the showpiece tournament in Japan won't apply on Saturday at Westpac Stadium as the two heavyweights get set to field teams at close to full strength.

Hanging over the contest is last year's result at the same venue which the Springboks won 36-34.

Retallick says there's no way he could forget that result, one of just four losses he has experienced in his 76 tests in an All Blacks jersey.

Springbok test no guide to World Cup

The Rugby Championship Test in Wellington on Saturday is the only meeting of the old rivals ahead of their clash in Yokohama on September 21st, a match that should set the World Cup alight on day two of the tournament.

Hansen says both teams are in a building process and plenty can happen in two months, stripping this week's match of a bragging rights element.

"I guess it will give whoever wins it a little confidence going in to the World Cup, but it won't mean whoever wins this one will automatically win the one in the World Cup," he said.

All Blacks vs South Africa isn't about revenge, says Steve Hansen

Hansen says while the World Cup is his prized goal this year, he isn't concerned about what the match against South Africa on Saturday might mean ahead of their cup round-robin match in Japan in two months' time.

The All Blacks and South Africa clash in their opening pool match at the cup on September 21.

"The tradition is really important, we enjoy their company a lot, we respect them, we love the way they play and we love the challenge they bring to us, so from that point of view it is really important encounter," Hansen told reporters in Wellington.