Wallabies winger Marika Koroibete withdrew from her tour of Japan and Britain on Sunday to spend time with her young family.
The 29-year-old missed the final test of the Australian Rugby Championship against Argentina this month to be with his newborn baby in Melbourne and has chosen to stay there.
“We’ve been discussing this for a while,” said coach Dave Rennie.
“Covid threw a lot of curved balls at all of us. Marika has been away from home for a long time and (his wife) Emma is quite isolated there (in Melbourne).
“They had a newborn baby and they have a few other young boys, so based on these situations, Marika decided not to tour. “
Koroibete, who signed with Japan’s Panasonic Wild Knights earlier this year, is a mainstay of the squad and one of the few world-class players Rennie had at his disposal, his absence being a heavy blow.
The Wallabies, who are on a four-game winning streak, face Japan in Oita on October 23 en route to Great Britain for testing against Scotland, England and Wales.
But Rennie was convinced the Wallabies had enough depth to cover him, with people like Jordan Petaia and Tom Wright able to fill the role.
“As always, it’s an opportunity,” said Rennie, who won’t be calling a replacement for the 37-man squad.
“Marika didn’t play the last game. Jordy (Petaia) took the start. It sniffed Tom Wright and he played really well. It is a position in which we have a little depth. “
Pone Fa’amausili, one of four unselected players named to the squad, will also miss the tour after twisting his calf in training.
© 2021 AFP