Northern Provincial Rugby

It’s Rugby Season!

It’s Rugby Season!

To quote Big Kev, I’m Excited! No longer shall we suffer Michael Clarke’s team dominating the South Englican’s in dead 50 over rubbers, tonight marks the Waratah’s first match of the year, and in my mind the official opening of the Rugby season!

The NSW Waratahs host the Fijian Warriors at the Sydney Football Stadium tonight at 7:40pm. If you can’t make it to the match in person (tickets are $10 here), then join us for live text based coverage and wanging on from around 7:30pm Sydney time. Score updates will also be posted on twitter if you’d like to follow there.

While this is the first match for the Waratahs this year, the team has a very settled feel about it with few changes from last years squad. Lachie Turner at 13 will be one to keep an eye on, while big Cliffy’s return at 8 is something all Waratah and Wallaby fans have been holding out for.

The Fijians had a solid hitout last week, going down to the Melbourne Rebels 42-27. They’ll be better for the run, and With their Rugby World Cup squad set to be finalised after tonights’ match it’s doubtful anything will be left on the park. Known for their flamboyant and attacking rugby, the set piece should be an area of focus against the Waratahs highly capped forwards.

This should encourage a closer encounter than has been witnessed at the last two trial encounters between these sides; the 2009 game saw the ‘Tahs blitz Fiji 60 points to zip in Newcastle, while the 2010 edition resulted in an 83-15 rinding in Orange.

Fiji Warriors (Squad) Waratahs
Waisea Naulago 1 Sekope Kepu
Viliame Veikoso 2 Tatafu Polota-Nau
Iosefo Bele 3 Al Baxter
Ben Makutu 4 Kane Douglas
Noa Bolatagici 5 Dean Mumm
Setefano Somoca 6 Ben Mowen
Rupeni Nasiga 7 Phil Waugh [c]
Api Ratuniyarawa 8 Wycliff Palu
Tevita Cavubati 9 Luke Burgess
Samuela Bola 10 Berrick Barnes
Aca Ratuva 11 Drew Mitchell
Jimilai Naikadawa 12 Tom Carter
Kelepi Ketedromo 13 Lachie Turner
Anare Koliavu 14 Afa Pakalani
Joeli Kotobalavu 15 Kurtley Beale
Nemia Kenatale 16 Scott Sio
Seveci Taka 17 John Ulugia
Waisale Vatuvoka 18 Greg Peterson
Taniela Rawaqa 19 Dave Dennis
Paula Karatu 20 Josh Holmes
Jo Ravulovulo 21 Sosene Anesi
Ravai Fatiaki 22 Ryan Cross
Isoa Neivua 23 Ben Seymour
Apisalome Waqatabu 24 Sitaleki Timani
Isoa Donaldson 25 Paddy Ryan
Adriu Delai 26 Chris Alcock
Jonetani Ralulu 27 Lopeti Timani
Manoa Satala  28 Tom Kingston

Did I mention I was excited? So excited in fact that when I saw the 2011 season promotional photos on the Waratahs website I just had to get involved. Unfortunately the budget at G&GR couldn’t stretch to hire a make-up artist to paint mud on my face so I had to improvise.

Northern Provincial Rugby

Moses spends far too long on G&GR, dealing with the totality of the strength and conditioning, the medical, the rugby side of things, strategy, the review, preview of the internet itself and also the individuals. A Waratahs apologist and rib-eye steak enthusiast, he is often found working behind the scenes keeping the G&GR juggernaut afloat.

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