Wallabies coach Dave Rennie has forecast changes to his line-up for the deciding Test in Brisbane on Saturday after France equalised with a gripping second Test victory in Melbourne.
France fullback Melvyn Jaminet secured a 28-26 victory with a penalty strike in the 78th minute, wresting back the lead after the Wallabies had edged in front just minutes earlier at AAMI Park.
It was France’s first win over the Wallabies on Australian soil in 31 years.
With Australia winning the first Test in Brisbane last Saturday 23-21, the condensed series will be fought out back at Suncorp Stadium with just four days break.
Rennie stuck by the same 23 for the first two Tests but said there would be new faces coming in.
“I think so – we will see how our guys bounce back tomorrow,” Rennie said.
“There’s massive competition for places – there’s a number of guys who played in these first two games and there’s not a hell of a lot between them and someone who is outside that 23.
“We’ve got guys who have been really scrapping for an opportunity and deserve a crack and we want to see a response from those new guys coming in – they will be fresh and full of beans and give us some key energy.”
Winger Tom Wright had an unhappy match while Rennie could opt to reward halfback Tate McDermott with a start after he impressed off the bench.
The Wallabies were outplayed at the breakdown, with France showing much more urgency to force penalties and turnovers.
Lock Lukhan Salakaia-Loto lacked discipline in that area but still topped the tackle count.
Skipper Michael Hooper, who was one of his team’s best, was upbeat about their chances in the decider.
“There’s no lack of effort in the squad – everyone is aiming up,” Hooper said.
“We will wake up sore but rearing to go and if we fix up a couple of parts of our game I think we can take it another level again.”