Foley named to start ... again

Wed, 22 Mar 2017 11:24
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TEAM ANNOUNCEMENT: For the second successive week the Waratahs have named Wallaby flyhalf Bernard Foley to start.

Foley was also named in the starting XV ahead of last week's loss to the Brumbies, but withdrew at a late stage - as he had not made a full recovery from the concussion he suffered in a pre-season game against the Highlanders.  

The inclusion of Foley comes as the Waratahs made several changes to the starting line-up ahead of their Round Five encounter with the Melbourne Rebels on Friday - a match in wgich they will look to win back the Weary Dunlop Shield.

After earning his first NSW Waratahs cap in round three, Jake Gordon's good form will see him start at scrumhalf, with Jed Holloway and Ned Hanigan also set to start after returning from injury in Round Four.

"For Jake it is an opportunity as a promising young player and he deserves a chance," coach Daryl Gibson said.

"Jake's got an eye for a gap, he's a strong runner, he plays a lot on instincts and he is a good kicker of the ball.

"Ned came on and made a nice impact [last week]. He always performs at No.6 or No.4 - he is a very versatile player. I like what he brings to the team. He has got immense ability and it is a good opportunity on a bigger stage to really cement himself."

Further changes to positions will see Israel Folau back in the No.15 jersey, with Andrew Kellaway on the wing and David Horwitz starting in the centres alongside veteran Rob Horne.

Waratahs: 15 Israel Folau, 14 Reece Robinson, 13 Rob Horne, 12 David Horwitz, 11 Andrew Kellaway, 10 Bernard Foley, 9 Jake Gordon, 8 Jed Holloway, 7 Michael Hooper (captain), 6 Ned Hanigan, 5 Will Skelton, 4 Dean Mumm, 3 Sekope Kepu, 2 Tolu Latu, 1 Tom Robertson.
Replacements: 16 Damien Fitzpatrick, 17 Paddy Ryan, 18 David Lolohea, 19 David McDuling, 20 Michael Wells, 21 Nick Phipps, 22 Cam Clark, 23 Taqele Naiyaravoro.

Date: Friday, March 24
Venue: AAMI Park, Melbourne
Kick-off: 19.45p AEDT (08.45 GMT)
Referee: Brendon Pickerill (New Zealand)
Assistant referees: Glen Jackson (New Zealand), Jordan Way (Australia)
TMO: George Ayoub (Australia)

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Fri, 25 May 2018
Crusaders v Hurricanes 07h35 Christchurch
Rebels v Sunwolves 09h45 Melbourne
Jaguares v Sharks 19h40 Estadio Jose Amalfitani
Sat, 26 May 2018
Chiefs v Waratahs 07h35 Hamilton
Reds v Highlanders 09h45 Suncorp Stadium
Bulls v Brumbies 13h05 Loftus Versfeld
Exeter Chiefs v Saracens 14h00 London
Stormers v Lions 15h15 Newlands
Leinster v Scarlets 17h00 Dublin
Pool AU
Team P W D L Pts
Waratahs 11 6 1 4 31
Rebels 11 5 0 6 25
Reds 11 4 0 7 18
Brumbies 11 3 0 8 16
Sunwolves 11 0 9 10
Pool NZ
Team P W D L Pts
Crusaders 12 10 0 2 46
Hurricanes 11 10 0 1 45
Highlanders 11 7 0 4 32
Chiefs 11 7 0 4 32
Blues 12 3 0 9 17
Pool SA
Team P W D L Pts
Lions 13 7 0 6 36
Jaguares 12 7 0 5 29
Sharks 12 5 1 6 28
Bulls 12 5 0 7 24
Stormers 13 5 0 8 23