Ben Smith Rugby Championship: All Blacks see Kurtley Beale as Wallabies X-factor

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Ben Smith Kurtley Beale will have the All Blacks' attention on Saturday night in Perth.

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Kurtley Beale will have the All Blacks’ attention on Saturday night in Perth.

Wallabies star Kurtley Beale has got the same X-factor as Israel Folau and will pose a similar threat in Saturday night’s Bledisloe Cup clash in Perth, according to All Blacks back Ben Smith.

Folau’s messy exit from the Wallabies left Australia with a massive hole to fill at fullback.

Tom Banks was solid as starter in the 35-17 loss to the Springboks in South Africa last month, but it was Beale’s performance in the No.15 jersey off the bench there and since that really caught the eye of the All Blacks.

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All Blacks coach Steve Hansen says the Wallabies are coping well without their sacked fullback Israel Folau.

Beale is expected to retain the role at fullback for Saturday’s clash at Optus Stadium.

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