Waugh grabs underdog tag for Waratahs - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Waugh grabs underdog tag for Waratahs

By Adrian Warren 27/05/2008 07:22:57 PM Comments (0)

Waratahs skipper Phil Waugh was quick to grab the underdog tag back for his team after a team-mate did his best to discard it heading into Saturday's Super 14 rugby final against the Crusaders in Christchurch.

The Waratahs head to Christchurch on Wednesday endeavouring to win their first Super title and deny the Crusaders their seventh from nine finals.

Although NSW has won only one Super match in Christchurch, they head into the AMI Stadium clash full of confidence.

"We feel we are in a good bit of form now, I don't think there's any underdog status or anything like that," Waratahs fullback Sam Norton-Knight told the media.

"We go in there with full confidence."

Veteran flanker Waugh chuckled when asked whether he agreed with Norton-Knight's assessment.

"I think we probably are the underdog, I don't know what we are at with SportsTab, but I'd say we're paying more than they (the Crusaders) are," Waugh said.

"They have been the form team, they won the round robin competition pretty convincingly, so they deserve the home final.

"We're certainly going over there with confidence running off the back of how we've gone the last couple of months, but I'd say we would be the underdogs."

The major betting institutions on Tuesday had the Crusaders as a clear favourite for the game.

Long serving Waugh, who just last week tallied his 100th appearance for NSW, is one of a handful of survivors from the Waratahs team which started their 2005 Super final loss to the Crusaders in Christchurch.

Asked what advice he would have for the many Waratahs playing their first Super final, Waugh said: "Just to play the way they have been playing.

"I think the confidence and the belief we've had so far over the last period of time has been really paying off,' Waugh said.

"Particularly with the young backline, just to out and have the confidence to play".

The veteran backrower revealed the influx of young talent into the team this year had added energy to the Waratahs outfit.

"If you've seen (halfback) Luke Burgess, going out on the field with him is enough to keep you going," Waugh said.

"I think there's plenty of energy, that youth and enthusiasm has been really refreshing."

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