Argentina short of preparation

Argentine rugby union selectors will send almost half of their frontline players into battle on Tuesday night, just four days before the Pumas meet the world champion Wallabies.

Veteran hooker Federico Mendez is among the group named for the clash with Queensland at Ballymore in the tourists' only hitout before the opening Test on Saturday.

The Pumas weren't prepared to risk star halfback Agustin Pichot, but coach Marcelo Loffreda will be desperate for his players to emerge unscathed. Mendez, lock Alejandro Allub, flanker Rolando Martin, and backs Diego Albanese, Ignacio Corletto and Felipe Contepomi will play just 10 days after helping the Pumas to a gritty win over Ireland.

Mendez and Albanese are among the small band of professional players who hold the key to the Pumas' chances of threatening Australia. The Pumas need to forge combinations between their professional and amateur brigades before meeting the Wallabies, prompting selectors to pitch their frontline players into battle against the Reds.

Mendez will be joined by prop Roberto Grau, who plays with London club Saracens, in an experienced front row confronting a Queensland pack minus Test props Fletcher Dyson and Glenn Panoho.

The Reds were forced to make two changes on Monday, with lock Mike Mitchell (head knock) and halfback Jacob Rauluni (ankle) failing fitness tests.

Meanwhile, the Wallabies continued their trouble-free preparations in Caloundra, ahead of their first match since the World Cup triumph last November. The squad will remain at their Caloundra base until Friday afternoon before making the one-hour trip to Brisbane.

QUEENSLAND: Richard Graham, Rick Nalatu, Steve Kefu, Elton Flatley, Scott Barton, Shane Drahm, John Slater, John Roe, David Croft, Scott Fava, Nathan Sharpe, Van Humphreys, Andrew Heath, Sean Hardman, Nic Stiles (capt). Res: Shaun Barry, Rod Seib, Chris Garrard, David Duley, Tom McVerry, Dan Crowley, Tim Tavalea.

ARGENTINA: Felipe Contepomi, Ignacio Corletto, Jose Orengo, Diego Giannantonio, Diego Albanese, Jose Luis Cilley, Nicolas Fernandez Miranda, Hugo Dande, Rolando Martin, Lucas Ostiglia, German Llanes, Alejandro Allub, Julio Garcia, Federico Mendez, Roberto Grau. Res: Facundo Sloer, Jose Nunez Piossek, Juan Fernandez Miranda, Raul Perez, Fernando Diaz Alberdi, Agustin Canalda, Leopoldo De Chazal.

Brought to you by AAP