Halangahu gets first shot as 'Tahs No.10 - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Halangahu gets first shot as 'Tahs No.10

By Adrian Warren 18/01/2010 07:14:45 PM Comments (0)

Five-eighth Daniel Halangahu will captain a NSW squad containing the Waratahs' new overseas recruits in the Super 14 side's first rugby trial of the season, against Queensland in Lismore on Saturday.

None of NSW's Wallabies will play in the four-quarter game, but coach Chris Hickey will use up to 28 men.

Hickey confirmed All Blacks winger/fullback Sosene Anesi, South African-born lock Hendrik Roodt and New Zealand born flanker and lock Cam Jowitt will each make their first appearance in a Waratahs shirt.

"We're very keen to have a look at those players, we've been really impressed with the way they've trained," Hickey told reporters on Monday.

"But it's not until you see players on the park that you get that really strong indication of what they are going to offer the program."

Halangahu will get first crack at one of the playmaking roles.

The 25-year-old Sydney University pivot will vie with Kurtley Beale and prize recruit Berrick Barnes for the key inside back position once the Super 14 tournament starts next month.

"He (Halangahu) showed last year that not only his form with the Waratahs, but also in the Sydney club competition, that he's really matured as a player," Hickey said.

"He's got a good rugby mind, he stays composed, so we feel that he's the right person for this game."

Hickey will give his fringe squad members and young academy players the opportunities against the Reds.

He said Barnes, who only recently resumed full training following an ankle injury sustained on the Wallabies' spring tour last year, could now possibly play in the Waratahs' second trial against Fiji Warriors in Orange on January 30.

It was originally thought Barnes might only play their final trial against the Brumbies in Canberra on February 4.

Among the emerging players keen to impress on Saturday will be former Reds halfback Brendan McKibbin.

The Scottish born flanker turned No.9 is regarded by Hickey as a serious challenger to the Waratahs' other two halfbacks, Wallaby Luke Burgess and Josh Holmes, who has returned from the Brumbies.

"We've got three very good halfbacks to choose from. Brendan has performed well since he's come down here in November," Hickey said.

"All three will contest strongly, not only during the trial period but throughout the (Super 14) season."

McKibbin expected a ribbing from his former Reds teammates on Saturday.

"It's going to be interesting, but I'm not thinking about who they are, it's just another group of guys in a different jersey," McKibbin said.

He acknowledged he faced a challenge to take playing time off the more established Burgess and Holmes.

"They are two quality halfbacks and it's good to be around them, it's healthy competition and the more we can feed off each other at training, I think it's going to bring the best out of all three of us," McKibbin said.

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