Friday’s Rugby News sees no more Israel Folau news,
Pocock Out!… Again
The fallout from the Wallabies disastrous pre-season training camp continues with David Pocock ruled out for his tenth game this season. His absence and an injury to eight-man Lacky McCaffery opens the door for Jahrome Brown to have a crack at the openside flanker spot.
The Brumbies have moved Tom Cusack to blindside and left Pete Samu at eight but their depth is being sorely tested with a plethora of injuries to their back row stocks.
Lachlan McCaffery (knee) has dropped out of the 23 due to a medial ligament injury he aggravated in the 31-20 win over the Johannesburg Lions last weekend.
It’s a massive double blow to the Brumbies as they look to get their season back on track during the South Africa and Argentina leg of their Super Rugby season.
“[Pocock] should be available next week. He’s not at 100 per cent, but the Jaguares in Buenos Aires will be what we’re aiming for,” McKellar said.
“It was always unlikely. [For] a calf injury two weeks is generally the minimum.”
The 22-year-old backrower has been on the Brumbies bench for their past three games, but will get his chance to start at Newlands.
“Brown comes in, who has performed well off the bench, gets his first start. Mr Cusack at six and Pete Samu at eight, so still a quality back row ,” McKellar said.
“[Brown’s] physical, high workrate, he’s just someone who’s in the game.
“Whether it be attack or defence, he’s always a typical openside flanker where he’s always in and around the ball and off the back of that he has a lot of quality involvements.
“He’s forced turnovers in defence, he’s scored tries and had some nice touches in attack for us. It’s a great opportunity for him against a quality Stormers pack.”
BRUMBIES (15-1): Tom Banks, Henry Speight, Tevita Kuridrani, Tom Wright, Toni Pulu, Christian Lealiifano, Joe Powell, Pete Samu, Jahrome Brown, Tom Cusack, Sam Carter, Rory Arnold, Allan Alaalatoa, Folau Fainga’a, Scott Sio
Reserves: Josh Mann-Rea, James Slipper, Leslie Leuluaialii-Makin, Darcy Swain, Murray Douglas, Matt Lucas, Wharenui Hawera, Andy Muirhead
Saturday 20 April 2019
Super Rugby Round 10
Stormers v Plus500 Brumbies
(Newlands, Cape Town, 23:05 – AEST)
Big news for the east coast elitists! Beale has beaten the man flu and will play against the Melbourne Re
dsbels! Beale takes over the fullback position from he who shall not be named (for today at least) and should feel right at home. It could actually be a better fit than his usual inside-centre role where he tends to be a little indirect.
This from the SMH,
The top two sides in the Australian conference will face off this Saturday in a crucial match in the context of both their seasons.
The importance of the game is not lost on either side at the midway point of the season.
“We’re within a touch of leading our conference,” Waratahs second-rower Rob Simmons said. “It’s a double-edged sword: if we can take a win away from them and get a win for ourselves … it really puts us in good stead.”
Waratahs vs. Rebels, 7.45 p.m., Sydney Cricket Ground, Sydney
Waratahs: Kurtley Beale, Cam Clark, Adam Ashley-Cooper, Karmichael Hunt, Alex Newsome, Bernard Foley, Jake Gordon, Michael Wells, Michael Hooper (c), Jack Dempsey, Rob Simmons, Jed Holloway, Sekope Kepu, Damien Fitzpatrick, Harry Johnson-Holmes. Replacements: Andrew Tuala, Rory O’Connor, Chris Talakai, Tom Staniforth, Will Miller, Nick Phipps, Lalakai Foketi, Curtis Rona
Rebels: Reece Hodge, Jack Maddocks, Tom English (c), Billy Meakes, Marika Koroibete, Quade Cooper, Will Genia, Isi Naisarani, Richard Hardwick, Luke Jones, Adam Coleman, Matt Philip, Jermaine Ainsley, Anaru Rangi, Matt Gibbon. Replacements: Hugh Roach, Tetera Faulkner, Sam Talakai, Ross Haylett-Petty, Rob Leota, Michael Ruru, Campbell Magnay, Sione Tuipulotu
What’s Happening To The Rebels Skippers?
The Rebels have managed to break their second captain for the year after skipper Angus Cottrell failed to recover from a concussion sustained at training Monday. Cottrell was covering for Dane Haylett-Petty who hurt his pinky a while ago.
The new skipper is club stalwart Tom English while Richard Hardwick replaces Cottrell on the side of the scrum. Anaru Rangi, Jack Maddocks and Matt Philip all returned to the starting side after missing last game due to injury.
Hardwick has played for the Wallabies and proven himself in Super Rugby, but Wessels has pushed him to boost his fitness levels.
“I’m really pleased with Dicky’s contribution in the back end of the Stormers game, he is back to full fitness which is where he needs to be,” Wessels said.
“We all know he is a Wallaby. When he is on and hungry he brings a lot to the game.
“We have been pushing to get him a bit fitter, to his credit he has done that. He made some changes to get to where he needed to be. It’s a competitive position and he has needed to play well and train well to get back into the mix.”
Haylett-Petty and hooker Jordan Uelese are in line to be available for selection after next week’s bye.
Rory Best Retiring.
Ireland and Ulster skipper Rory Best has announced his intention to retire after this year’s world cup and who could blame him. The 36-year-old made his international debut in 2005 and 117 games later he’s earned the accolades that keep heading his way.
“It is with mixed feelings that I announce my retirement from Ulster Rugby as of the end of this season,” said Best.
“This feels like the right time for me to go out on my terms, a luxury for which I feel very privileged.”
Since succeeding Paul O’Connell as captain in 2013, Best led Ireland to three Six Nations titles, including the Grand Slam in 2018.
A win over New Zealand last November capped a remarkable year for Irish rugby, although Joe Schmidt’s side suffered a disappointing 2019 Six Nations and fell to heavy defeats by England and Wales.
Best has featured in three World Cups and twice been selected for the British and Irish Lions, although he did not play a Test.
Best said: “I am very excited for the end of the season with Ulster and for the upcoming World Cup with Ireland – both of which I hope to finish with a massive high, playing at the top of my game.”
Correct as of 16 March 2019
British and Irish Lions
Correct as of 10 March 2019