Peter Betham will take the place of winger Tom Kingston when the HSBC Waratahs play their first ever match against the Southern Kings in Port Elizabeth this weekend.
Following last week’s 30-19 loss to the Bulls in Pretoria, Michael Cheika’s side will be looking for a win before heading home after their two-match trip to South Africa.
The Head Coach has opted to give Peter Betham a start on the left wing, with Tom Kingston named on an eight-man bench that will be reduced to the final seven replacements later this week.
Also included in the squad is towering Sydney University lock Will Skelton who will be hoping to celebrate his 21st birthday tomorrow by making his NSW debut in Port Elizabeth the following day.
Super Rugby’s 2013 newcomers, the match will be the first meeting between the HSBC Waratahs and Southern Kings. The Port Elizabeth-based side has already shown how dangerous it can be by beating the Rebels and Force and HSBC Waratahs Assistant Coach Alan Gaffney says the players know they have a battle on their hands.
“The Kings have a hard-working forward pack and they’re coached by Alan Solomons, a guy who’s been around the block a long, long time, having coached Ulster when I was with Munster, and Northampton in the early 2000s,” said Gaffney.
“He’s a very astute guy and he’s got a hard-working squad with a lot of pace and a strong kicking game – an extremely long and astute kicking game. You saw it against the Rebels, they had ability to kick the ball 65m on the fly - that’s a fair kick when you’re not at altitude!
“We have got to approach this game as a battle, but that’s no different to what we’ve been doing. The attitude in the squad is great, we don’t treat any game easier than the next game – you can’t in this competition. Over the years there have been too many examples of what can happen if you don’t pay everyone the respect they deserve. We won’t make that mistake this weekend.”
The match kicks off at 5.05pm local time on Saturday and will be televised live in the early hours of Sunday morning in Australia on Fox Sports. Alternatively you can follow every score live on twitter @NSWWaratahs or by searching #KINvWAR.
HSBC Waratahs team to play the Southern Kings
Sunday May 5, 2013 (1.05am AEST)
Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium, Port Elizabeth
1. Benn Robinson (Eastwood)
2. Tatafu Polota-Nau (Parramatta)
3. Sekope Kepu (Randwick)
4. Sitaleki Timani (Southern Districts)
5. Kane Douglas (Southern Districts)
6. Dave Dennis (Sydney University, captain)
7. Michael Hooper (Manly)
8. Wycliff Palu (Manly)
9. Brendan McKibbin (Eastern Suburbs)
10. Bernard Foley (Sydney University)
11. Peter Betham (Sydney University)
12. Rob Horne (Southern Districts)
13. Adam Ashley-Cooper (Northern Suburbs)
14. Cam Crawford (Northern Districts)
15. Israel Folau (Sydney University)
John Ulugia (Eastern Suburbs)
Paddy Ryan (Sydney University)
Will Skelton (Sydney University)
Mitchell Chapman (Eastern Suburbs)
Pat McCutcheon (Sydney University)
Matt Lucas (Manly)
Ben Volavola (Southern Districts)
Tom Kingston (Sydney University)