Belfast Telegraph

Monday 28 July 2014

Star Tahs will play

Berrick Barnes

Waratahs duo Berrick Barnes and Adam Ashley-Cooper will both play in Saturday's season-opening Super 15 encounter with the Reds despite failing to train with the squad on Monday, coach Michael Foley has confirmed.

The Test duo were among several players to sit out the session at the Sydney Football Stadium following Saturday's bruising trial against Tonga.

"Everyone will be right. There was a couple of niggles and those guys did rehab in favour of being 100% fit for the weekend," Foley said.

"The concerns that everybody knows about are still there, obviously. Lachie Turner (hamstring) won't play and he's going to be out for the season and Drew Mitchell (ankle) is going to be in a boot for another couple weeks until he begins his rehab running.

"So with the exception of Lachie, pretty much we're where we thought we could end up being - everybody else is fit and ready to go. We're hoping that everybody will train tomorrow (Tuesday)."

Number eight Wycliff Palu and rookie winger Tom Kingston were the other players who failed to train, while injured skipper Rocky Elsom (hamstring) worked out away from the main group and will not return for several weeks.

With Turner and Mitchell both sidelined, young guns Kingston and Brackin Karauria-Henry will almost certainly line up on the wings.

Foley expects the Reds to target his back three but is confident his young flyers are up to the challenge.

"Assuming those guys are selected, I would think Queensland will look at opportunities to kick to our back three - that's how they've played their game for 12 months," he said.

"Queensland have a very clever tactical kicker in (Will) Genia. I don't expect it to be any more than it normally would be but that is a part of their game."

Latest Sport News

Stats Centre