Waugh's return to bolster 'Tahs pack - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Waugh's return to bolster 'Tahs pack

By Samantha Broun 03/02/2009 12:19:05 PM Comments (0)

Captain Phil Waugh returns from injury to bolster the NSW Waratahs pack for their final pre-season Super 14 trial match against the Brumbies at the SFS on Thursday night.

Waugh rolled his left ankle at training last week but has been cleared to play his first trial of the season a week after his fellow Wallabies returned for duty.

Flyhalf Kurtley Beale has been picked ahead of Daniel Halangahu but coach Chris Hickey said the battle for the Waratahs No.10 jersey was still wide open.

"The competition continues," Hickey said on Monday.

"They both had strong games against Fiji (Warriors) last Friday night. 'Hangas' started (then) so Kurtley gets his chance to start this.

"We will review their performances over the two games and then make a selection based on that."

Hickey said there were plenty of positions still open heading toward the first round clash with the Hurricanes.

"We're going to carry 11 reserves into this game and there are four or five of them who are competing for positions," Hickey said.

"There's a number of players who started on the bench last week and they get the opportunity to have a go from kick-off on Thursday.

"We started with Tatafu (Polota-Nau), Daniel Halangahu, Timana Tahu and Luke Burgess last Friday, this week Adam (Frier), Kurtley, Brett Sheehan and Rob Horne will all get a chance to start.

"Everyone will get game time and by the end of the match we're hoping we will have gathered enough information from the three trial fixtures to pick our best possible squad for round one in Wellington."

Hickey said the Waratahs final trial match would be their toughest of the pre-season.

"It might only be a trial, but whenever the Waratahs and the Brumbies come together there's always a bit of extra feeling," Hickey said.

"That environment creates the need to perform under pressure which will be one of the main aims of both sides going into the match."

NSW Waratahs: Sam Norton-Knight, Lachie Turner, Rob Horne, Tom Carter, Lote Tuqiri, Kurtley Beale, Brett Sheenan, Scott Fava, Phil Waugh, Ben Mowen, Will Caldwell, Dean Mumm, Al Baxter, Adam Frier, Benn Robinson. Res: Tatafu Polota-Nau, Jeremy Tilse, Chris Thompson, Beau Robinson, Luke Burgess, Daniel Halangahu, Peter Playford, Dan Palmer, Dave Dennis, Kane Douglas, Timana Tahu, Tim Bennetts, Sitiveni Mafi.

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