Freier ruled out for Brumbies clash - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Freier ruled out for Brumbies clash

By Adrian Warren 12/04/2005 08:54:19 PM Comments (0)

While the chances of NSW lock Justin Harrison returning to Canberra to play against his old Super 12 side improved, there was bad news for another old Brumby Adam Freier.

Hooker Freier was ruled out of Saturday's match at Canberra Stadium due to a grade two groin strain he suffered in the Waratahs' loss to the Hurricanes in Wellington last Sunday.

Freier was hopeful of returning to the side for the Waratahs' next game against the Highlanders following their bye next week.

While Freier couldn't train, Harrison ran at training and encouraged NSW coach Ewen McKenzie with his progress following an achilles injury he suffered last weekend.

McKenzie was also cautiously optimistic about his captain and half-back Chris Whitaker, who reiterated he would be fine to play on Saturday after scans cleared him of any serious damage after he suffered a head knock last Sunday.

With Freier out, Brendan Cannon, who recently announced his decision to sign for the new Perth franchise in 2006, will return to the starting lineup.

McKenzie indicated the position of backup hooker would more than likely be covered by Gareth Hardy, who has been the Waratahs' reserve prop for most of the season.

"Gareth Hardy has been training, throwing and scrummaging all year for the specific purpose of giving us that coverage," McKenzie said.

"It's something I've been talking to him about for the last six months and he's been practising his throwing at pretty much most training sessions.

Brumbies coach Laurie Fisher came closer to naming an unchanged side than at any stage of the champions' injury plagued season.

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