The Wallabies will give star centres Samu Kerevi and Tevita Kuridrani every possible chance to play a role on the Spring Tour as the pair prepare to return from injury.
Neither Kerevi or Kuridrani will line up for their NRC sides this weekend, which leaves them next-to-no chance to travel to Japan to face the All Blacks.
But it’s understood Kerevi, in particular, remains a chance to link up with the Wallabies in Wales a week later.
The star Reds centre, who has had a four-month lay off due to surgery on a ruptured biceps suffered in June, said last week he is hopeful of making a return for Brisbane City if they qualify to play finals football in the NRC.
The Queensland side face a must-win clash with Canberra Vikings on Sunday.
If Brisbane City lose and are bundled out, Kerevi could line up for Souths in the Queensland Premier Rugby 7s competition on the following weekend to get some game time.
Should he prove his fitness there he could then link up with the Wallabies squad in Wales, which would be a huge boost for Michael Cheika’s men.
The Fijian born centre has not pulled on a jersey since the June Tests and it was initially thought that he would miss the remainder of the year.
But his rehabilitation has progressed quicker than first thought.
While Reece Hodge has done a solid job at outside centre in Kerevi’s absence, the absence of a hard-running No. 13 in the mould of Kerevi and Kuridrani has been notable.
But while there is good news on the Kerevi front for the Wallabies, the availability of Brumbies centre Tevita Kuridrani is less clear.
He has been out for three months with a pectoral injury that has also sidelined him from NRC duties.
It’s understood the veteran centre is hopeful of proving his fitness in time for the Spring Tour but will likely need the Vikings to win on Sunday and play finals football if he is to make a return to the field.
He is considered less likely than Kerevi of proving his fitness in time.
The other significant name missing from the current Wallabies squad is Jack Dempsey.
He has played four matches – including three starts – for the Sydney Rays and looks to be back to full fitness.
A decision is yet to be made as to whether the Wallabies will take him on the Spring Tour or if it would be best to let the star flanker put a full preseason under his belt and be ready to fire in 2019.
That call will likely be made at the back end of next week.
The Wallabies could certainly do with his line bending ball running with Lukhan Tui still unavailable for personal reasons.
Tui is an outside chance of touring but there is no pressure being placed on him.
Brumbies young gun Rob Valetini is also still in discussions to be taken on the Spring Tour after fears he’d recently re-injured his bad knee were cleared.