Staniforth striving to repay faith

Super Rugby
AAP
by AAP

Lock Tom Staniforth wants to repay the NSW Waratahs for giving him an opportunity and he can underline his value this weekend, with Wallaby Rob Simmons missing from their second row.

The 23-year-old from Canberra, who played 22 Super Rugby games for the Brumbies, has moved to the Tahs on a three-year deal.

With fellow recruit Simmons sidelined for two games with a quadriceps injury, Staniforth is the Tahs' senior specialist second-rower, heading into Saturday's clash with the Sharks in Durban

The former Australian under 20 representative isn't fazed by the possibility of extra responsibility in the absence of 82-Test veteran Simmons.

"I'm just really enjoying playing footy and that stuff comes and goes," Staniforth said from South Africa.Staniforth will take charge of the Waratahs lineout with Rob Simmons still in Sydney. Photo: RUGBY.com.au/Stuart WalmsleyWhile the retirement of Dean Mumm and the departure of Will Skelton opened up lock vacancies for Staniforth, that wasn't the main motivation for him joining the Tahs.

"I was just really excited for a change," Staniforth said.

"I was pretty lucky that the Waratahs put faith in me and I'm excited to hopefully repay that faith over the next few years.

"I moved up looking for an opportunity and was lucky enough to be given one."

Coming off a first-up home win over the Stormers, NSW face a Sharks side who have had a bye following an opening-round loss to domestic rivals the Lions.

While the Tahs scrum struggled against the Stormers, the Sharks have also had issues in that area.


"There was no consistency from us after the first scrum we really battled to get back into it and regain our composure," Sharks head coach Robert du Preez said.

"It's always tough if your pack is going back like that."

The Tahs are bracing themselves for another set-piece onslaught this week.

"All the South African sides have a massive set-piece focus and our job as a forward pack is to mitigate those strengths and try to play to our strengths," Staniforth said.

The Waratahs take on the Sharks in Durban on Sunday morning, kicking off at 12:05am AEDT, broadcast LIVE on FOX SPORTS.