Smith and Waugh may play All Blacks - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Smith and Waugh may play All Blacks

By Melissa Woods 17/07/2003 07:08:52 PM Comments (0)

Flankers George Smith and Phil Waugh could be surprise inclusions on either side of the Wallabies' scrum for their Tri-Nations encounter with New Zealand in Sydney later this month.

With Smith now recovered from the neck injury sustained against Ireland on June 7, the pair were included in the Wallabies' first-choice side at training at their Coffs Harbour base.

Both are openside specialists but Wallabies coach Eddie Jones said he was considering playing them on either side to increase Australia's speed and aggression at the breakdown, which was sadly lacking in Cape Town.

"It's always a possibility," Jones said.

"We've got to find the right backrow, I think (David) Lyons has done pretty well at blindside flanker but we've got to look at all our options and it's something that we've had a look at previously and something we can have a look at again."

Two small yet fast backrowers could match New Zealand's style of football because they play a lot of ball on the ground.

Jones wants Smith back in the side, yet Waugh was a tireless worker against South Africa, where No.6 David Lyons had an unhappy game.

"I thought George Smith, when he played Super 12, was probably one of the best backrow runners in the competition fullstop," Jones said.

What could stop Jones experimenting with the duo is that it could affect Australia's already troubled lineout, with 175cm Waugh and 180cm Smith not jumping options.

"We definitely need to have a third jumper, and even a fourth jumper the way lineouts are at the moment you struggle if you don't have that.

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