Palu back to start for Waratahs - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Palu back to start for Waratahs

17/02/2009 03:48:24 PM Comments (0)

Rampaging Wallaby No.8 Wycliff Palu has been promoted to start for the NSW Waratahs in the Super 14 match against the Chiefs on Friday.

The burly Palu relegated journeyman Scott Fava to the bench in the only change from the starting side that impressed in its season-opening 26-22 away win over the Hurricanes on Saturday.

He'll be playing only his second match since undergoing shoulder surgery for an injury suffered on the Wallabies tour to Europe, having come off the bench last week.

"Cliffy is a world class player so having him back at full fitness is a great advantage for the team," said Waratahs coach Chris Hickey.

"When he got his opportunity off the bench against the Hurricanes he showed enough to prove he's ready to start again."

The only other change to the side sees Dan Palmer move onto the bench in place of Jeremy Tilse as the backup prop.

Hickey is wary of the Chiefs who boast an impressive backline featuring All Blacks halves Brendon Leonard and Stephen Donald inside a bunch of flyers including All Blacks Mils Muliaina and Sitiveni Sivivatu and rising star Lelia Masaga.

The Chiefs were narrowly beaten 19-13 by the defending champion Crusaders in Christchurch at the weekend.

"We're expecting Friday night to be a real battle," said Hickey.

"The Chiefs were within one point of the Crusaders until after full-time last week and last year they beat the Waratahs in Hamilton.

"They have strike players all over the paddock, but in that respect we do as well, so it's a matter of getting the preparation right and putting it into practice when we hit the field."

NSW team: Sam Norton-Knight, Lachie Turner, Rob Horne, Timana Tahu, Lote Tuqiri, Kurtley Beale, Luke Burgess, Wycliff Palu, Phil Waugh (capt), Ben Mowen, Will Caldwell, Dean Mumm, Al Baxter, Tatafu Polota-Nau, Benn Robinson. Res: Adam Freier, Dan Palmer, Chris Thomson, Scott Fava, Brett Sheehan, Daniel Halangahu, Tom Carter.

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