Cheika: Folau not a miracle worker

Tue, 01 Apr 2014 09:23
Large folau

Waratahs coach Michael Cheika says it's unfair to expect miracles from Israel Folau when they take on the Stormers in Cape Town.

Waratahs coach Michael Cheika says it's unfair to expect miracles from Super Rugby's top try-scorer when they take on the Stormers in Cape Town.
 
Israel Folau's much anticipated return to action is set for this weekend after he missed the Waratahs' 32-10 demolition at the hands of the table-topping Sharks in Durban on Saturday with a throat injury.
 
Cheika said it would be unfair on Folau for fans to expect the superstar fullback to waltz back in and reverse the Waratahs fortunes after a disappointing display in Durban.
 
"Obviously that type of player is going to make a difference. I'm not naive of that fact," Cheika told AAP.
 
"But I still think he would have had limited opportunities last week because our attacking ruck wasn't what it should be.
 
"[scrumhalf] Nick Phipps was always under pressure. There was always someone in there spoiling his delivery of the ball and, from there, it was always difficult getting any flow in the backs," he explained.
 
Presuming Folau is declared fit, it is likely the Waratahs will revert to the backline that successfully piled on four tries in a bonus-point win over the Melbourne Rebels before heading to South Africa.
 
The Wallaby fullback only arrived in South Africa on Sunday but, providing he suffers no further setbacks, he will be named in the starting line-up on Thursday.
 
"I'm feeling pretty good actually. My throat's feeling fine and there's nothing really I'm too worried about," Folau said.
 
"I'm more than half a chance to play."
 
Because of the torrid nature of the spiteful encounter with the Sharks, and niggling injuries to midfield playmaker Kurtley Beale and No.8 Wycliff Palu, Cheika has delayed naming his team by a day.
 
"It was a very, very physical encounter," Cheika said.
 
"We're giving everybody an extra day to get on top things."
 
Although he's almost certain to be picked, Folau must meet some strict medical criteria and prove he's physically ready for the Stormers.
 
"He'll have a good hit-out, run hard for a couple of sessions and then we'll talk to the doctor at the end of the day," Cheika said.
 
"We'll make sure he wakes up the next day all good and then we'll decide from there.
 
"But if he pulls up well, then that will be a positive sign for the doctor and, as long as he's doing everything with everyone for the week, I think he'll be right."
 
Beale is still suffering from whiplash from a big tackle from Frans Steyn, but is "very likely to play", while Palu has a minor ankle injury.
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FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Fri, 28 April 2017
Highlanders v Stormers 07h35 Dunedin
Cardiff Blues v Zebre 18h05 Cardiff
Edinburgh v Dragons 18h35 Myreside
Leinster v Glasgow Warriors 18h35 RDS Arena
Newcastle Falcons v Worcester Warriors 19h00 Kingston Park
Sat, 29 April 2017
Chiefs v Sunwolves 07h35 Hamilton
Reds v Waratahs 09h45 Suncorp Stadium
Force v Lions 11h55 Perth
Ospreys v Ulster 14h00 Liberty Stadium
Bath v Gloucester 14h00 Recreation Ground
Exeter Chiefs v Northampton Saints 14h00 Sandy Park
Saracens v Bristol 14h00 Allianz Park
Harlequins v Wasps 14h00 Twickenham Stoop
Leicester Tigers v Sale Sharks 14h00 Welford Road
Cheetahs v Crusaders 15h15 Bloemfontein
Treviso v Munster 17h05 Stadio Monigo
Kings v Rebels 17h30 Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium
Connacht v Scarlets 18h35 Sportsground
Jaguares v Sharks 19h40 Buenos Aires
Sun, 30 April 2017
Brumbies v Blues 06h05 Canberra
RESULT SCORE
Sun, 23 April 2017
Clermont Auvergne v Leinster 27 | 22
Sat, 22 April 2017
Sharks v Rebels 9 | 9
Bulls v Cheetahs 20 | 14
Munster v Saracens 10 | 26
Force v Chiefs 7 | 16
Crusaders v Stormers 57 | 24
Highlanders v Sunwolves 40 | 15
Fri, 21 April 2017
Lions v Jaguares 24 | 21
Waratahs v Kings 24 | 26
Hurricanes v Brumbies 56 | 21
Mon, 17 April 2017
UP-Tuks v Maties 28 | 21
Sun, 16 April 2017
Bristol v Wasps 21 | 36
Northampton Saints v Saracens 25 | 27
Sat, 15 April 2017
Connacht v Leinster 24 | 37
Treviso v Edinburgh 21 | 6
SUPER RUGBY
MORE LOGS
Pool AU
Team P W D L Pts
Brumbies 8 3 0 5 17
Reds 8 2 0 6 10
Force 7 2 0 5 9
Waratahs 8 2 0 6 9
Rebels 7 1 1 5 7
Pool NZ
Team P W D L Pts
Crusaders 8 8 0 0 36
Hurricanes 8 7 0 1 33
Chiefs 8 7 0 1 33
Highlanders 8 5 0 3 23
Blues 8 3 0 5 17
Pool SA1
Team P W D L Pts
Stormers 8 6 0 2 26
Bulls 8 3 0 5 14
Cheetahs 8 2 0 6 10
Sunwolves 8 1 0 7 5
Pool SA2
Team P W D L Pts
Lions 8 7 0 1 32
Sharks 8 5 1 2 24
Jaguares 8 4 0 4 20
Kings 8 2 0 6 10