Game of the Week - Waratahs v Reds
March 5, 2009
Berrick Barnes leads the Reds in Sydney © Getty Images
The Super 14 will see the revival of one of the grand rivalries in rugby this weekend when the New South Wales Waratahs and Queensland Reds go toe-to-toe at Sydney Football Stadium.
The verbal barbs have been flying between the two sides all week, with Reds fly-half Quade Cooper kicking things off by accusing the Waratahs of being boring. Despite Cooper's assertion that the Reds will go out to play on Friday, the recent meetings between the sides point to the game being a close affair.
With the Waratahs currently unbeaten in this season's tournament and the Reds on a high after their first win of the season against the Cheetahs last time out this game is unlikely to change that statistic.
Benn Robinson and Wallabies hooker Adam Freier are both available to strengthen the Waratahs squad, with Robinson slotting in to the starting front-row alongside Al Baxter and Tatafu Polota-Nau. Phil Waugh skippers the side from the back-row, while Kurtley Beale and Luke Burgess start at halfback.
Cooper starts at No.10 for the Reds with skipper Berrick Barnes and Charlie Fetoai in the centre. Digby Ioane starts on the wing after a couple of games in the No.13 jersey while Daniel Braid will go toe-to-toe with Waugh.
Waratahs: Sam Norton-Knight, Lachie Turner, Rob Horne, Tom Carter, Lote Tuqiri, Kurtley Beale, Luke Burgess, Wycliff Palu, Phil Waugh (capt), Ben Mowen, Will Caldwell, Dean Mumm, Al Baxter, Tatafu Polota-Nau, Benn Robinson.
Replacements: Adam Freier, Dan Palmer, Chris Thomson, Dave Dennis, Brett Sheehan, Daniel Halangahu, Timana Tahu.
Reds: Mark McLinden, Digby Ioane, Charlie Fetoai, Berrick Barnes (capt), Peter Hynes, Quade Cooper, Ben Lucas, Leroy Houston, Daniel Braid, Scott Higginbotham, Hugh McMeniman, Van Humphries, Dayna Edwards, Sean Hardman, Greg Holmes.
Replacements: Saia Faingaa, Laurie Weeks, Adam Byrnes, Poutasi Luafutu, Will Genia, Anthony Faingaa, Blair Connor.
"These little deft touches, the nuances O'Driscoll has perfected are what Ireland will miss most." Tom Hamilton on Brian O'Driscoll's final Test in Dublin
Last year's thrashing at the hands of Wales was not the first time England have fallen to their rivals. Scrum Sevens looks at whether they have bounced back the following year
With just two rounds left in the 2014 championship, the intensity cranks up a notch at Twickenham. Tom Hamilton previews the weekend's action
"I had a perfect record against England as did a few other Welshmen. England always seemed to bring the best out of us." John Taylor on the age-old rivalry