Head knock rules out Foley for Tahs opener, Hegarty to start

13/04/2019 Posted by admin

The Waratahs’ round one ambitions have taken a hit after Test No.10 Bernard Foley was ruled out with ongoing concussion symptoms.
SuZhou Night Recruitment

Bryce Hegarty will take over at five-eighth against the Western Force on Saturday after Foley failed to pass mandatory head injury assessment protocols this week, with David Horwitz coming onto the bench.

Coach Daryl Gibson said his regular No.10 was still experiencing dizziness and did not pass a computer-based cognitive test after taking a head knock in the Waratahs’ trial match against the Highlanders a week ago, but would still travel to South Africa with the team for their round two and three games.

Gibson backed Foley’s replacement, Hegarty, who joined the Waratahs at the start of last year but suffered a season-ending knee injury.

“The reason we recruited Bryce in the first instance was because of his experience, the number of years he’s played down at the Rebels,” Gibson said.

“We get an excellent replacement, someone who can really step in and run the show, without skipping much of a beat.”

Hegarty played 33 Super Rugby games for the Rebels at fullback and five-eighth before signing with NSW at the end of 2015.

Second rower Ned Hanigan was also scratched from the line up with a knee problem. Dave McDuling comes on to the bench in his place.

Gibson said losing a Wallabies playmaker was “never great” but backed the squad’s depth to get the job done against the Force at Allianz Stadium.

“It’s never great but if you’re going to win this competition you’ve got to have a good squad adn have faith in that squad,” he said.

“We’ve been practising for the last month without him, for these moments, so I think we’re well-prepared.”

Waratahs team (1-15): Tom Robertson, Tolu Latu, Sekope Kepu, Dean Mumm, Will Skelton, Jack Dempsey, Michael Hooper, Michael Wells, Nick Phipps, Bryce Hegarty, Rob Horne, Irae Simone, Israel Folau, Reece Robinson, Andrew Kellaway.

Reserves (one to be omitted): Hugh Roach, Paddy Ryan, David Lolohea, Ned Hanigan, Brad Wilkin, Matt Lucas, Taqele Naiyaravoro, David Horwitz.

Comments are closed.