In a surprise move Super Rugby winning skipper James Horwill has been named captain of the Wallabies World Cup squad.
In a dramatic ceremony at Sydney International airport, the 30 Wallabies squad members walked out of a specially branded Boeing 747 aircraft led by their new skipper.
Deans said the decision to demote Rocky Elsom was in the ‘best interest of the team’.
“It is well documented that Rocky came into the Test season off a limited background in terms of preparation, having missed all but 60 minutes of Super Rugby due to injury,” Deans said. “As the incumbent captain, he warranted the opportunity to continue in the role but it has become clear that the additional responsibility has been a distraction that Rocky doesn’t need.
“We all felt it was in the best interest, both of Rocky and of the team, to relieve him of the extra duties, with James’s recent experience making him the best option to take over in the role.”
Elsom is one of eight who played at the 2007 tournament in France, where Australia bowed out in the quarter-finals.
The others are centre Adam Ashley-Cooper, flyhalf Berrick Barnes, winger Drew Mitchell, hooker Stephen Moore, No. 8 Wycliff Palu and locks Nathan Sharpe and Dan Vickerman.