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Curtis Rona set for Australia bow

Rugby league convert Curtis Rona will make his Australia debut during Saturday's Rugby Championship opener against New Zealand.

The Western Force player has been included in the Wallabies starting XV for the match in Sydney, although he will play on the left wing despite spending the majority of the Super Rugby season as an outside-centre.

Australia head coach Michael Cheika is not worried about playing the 25-year-old out of position, however, and is confident the back will flourish on the international stage.

Cheika said: "He's played on the big stage before in rugby league, so I'm sure he'll handle it, no problem.

"He's run there pretty much since we got into camp and he's looked comfortable there and he's got excellent chat from the outside in."

Rona, who will be lining up against the country of his birth on Saturday, will be joined in the starting line-up by centre Kurtley Beale, who will be featuring for Australia for the first time since their 2015 World Cup final defeat to the All Blacks.

Bernard Foley and Israel Folau will join Beale in the backline for Saturday's match, as Australia aim to make a winning start to their Rugby Championship campaign.

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