A history of Australia's World Cup bolters

Everyone loves a World Cup bolter.

With 100 days to go until the FIFA World Cup, and after Bert van Marwijk revealed his preliminary Caltex Socceroos squad for the March friendlies, we look back on the names no-one expected in the last three Australian World Cup sides.

FULL SQUAD: All 29 players in the extended squad


OVERSEAS-BASED BOLTERS: Check out who made the cut

HYUNDAI A-LEAGUE BOLTERS: Five players feature

2006 World Cup: Germany

Josh Kennedy

The lanky 23-year old striker, then playing for Dynamo Dresden in the German second-tier was uncapped when selected by Guus Hiddink and only made his debut in Australia's final game before the World Cup.

He was seen as something of a secret weapon for Hiddink and came off the bench in the pool games against Japan and Croatia.



Michael Beauchamp

The robust defender was a stand-out during Central Coast's march to the inaugural A-League grand final and had debuted for Australia in an Asian Cup qualifying victory over Bahrain earlier in the year.

He didn't play at the tournament in Germany, but went to South Africa four years later, playing in the win over Serbia.

Mark Milligan

Then at Sydney FC, the 20-year old midfielder was uncapped when picked by Hiddink for Germany.

He was part of the Young Socceroos squad in 2005 and debuted in the same game as Kennedy, against Liechtenstein five days before the World Cup started.

He didn't feature at the World Cup but has gone on to become one of Australia's most consistent players in the 12 years since.



2010 World Cup: South Africa

Nikita Rukavytsya

The 22-year-old was a left-field selection in Pim Verbeek's squad after an excellent Hyundai A-League season with Perth Glory had earned him a move to Dutch club FC Twente.

The speedy attacker featured off the bench in the group games against Germany and Ghana.



Richard Garcia

Garcia was playing for Hull City and became the first player from the club to appear at a World Cup when Verbeek picked him in his 23-man squad.

It was a baptism of fire for him as he started the first group game against Germany which ended in a 4-0 defeat.



2014 World Cup: Brazil

Ben Halloran

The right-sided attacker found good form at Fortuna Dusseldorf in the lead-up to the squad being named and was chosen as the replacement for Robbie Kruse who missed out through injury.

He played in all three games at the tournament, coming off the bench in each of them.



Bailey Wright

The defender was playing in England's third-tier with Preston North End when Ange Postecoglou named him as the only uncapped player in his 2014 World Cup squad.

While he didn't feature in Brazil, he was practically ever-present in qualifiers for the 2018 tournament.

Adam Taggart

Then at the Newcastle Jets, the energetic front-man had a breakout Hyundai A-League 2013/14 Season, scoring 16 times to win the Golden Boot.

Postecoglou not only picked the 21-year-old in his World Cup 23, but also handed him a start in Australia's third group game against Spain.