VIDEO: Tahs' Wallaby takes a backseat
TEAM ANNOUNCEMENT: Waratahs head coach Daryl Gibson has made two changes to the starting XV for Saturday's Super Rugby match against the Highlanders at Allianz Stadium.
Lock Tom Staniforth and scrumhalf Jake Gordon return to the NSW Waratahs’ starting line-up.
Staniforth replaces Ned Hanigan, who has been ruled out with a knee injury.
While Gordon starts ahead of Wallaby Nick Phipps, who is on the bench.
Hanigan’s injury also gives an opportunity to 20-year-old Eastern Suburbs lock Ryan McCauley, who has been named in the reserves along with hooker Tolu Latu.
"We talked really clearly with the two boys [Phipps and Gordon] at the start of this four-game block against the New Zealand teams that this is what we are going to do. We are going to continue that, so that means Nick [Phipps] will come back next week," Gibson said.
"Tolu has had four 80-minute games with Sydney University. Part of his re-introduction is around him doing the necessary work; he’s doing his throwing and he’s playing consistently. We’ve been pretty consistent in Hugh Roach and Damien Fitzpatrick so we see this as an opportunity for him (Latu) to again contribute and see what he can do," Gibson said.
Waratahs: 15 Israel Folau, 14 Cam Clark, 13 Curtis Rona, 12 Kurtley Beale, 11 Taqele Naiyaravoro, 10 Bernard Foley, 9 Jake Gordon, 8 Michael Wells, 7 Michael Hooper (Captain), 6 Will Miller, 5 Rob Simmons, 4 Tom Staniforth, 3 Sekope Kepu, 2 Damien Fitzpatrick, 1 Tom Robertson.
Replacements: 16 Tolu Latu, 17 Harry Johnson-Holmes, 18 Shambeckler Vui, 19 Ryan McCauley, 20 Jed Holloway, 21 Nick Phipps, 22 Lalakai Foketi, 23 Bryce Hegarty
Date: Saturday, May 19
Venue: Allianz Park, Sydney
Kick-off: 19.45 (9.45 GMT, 21.45 New Zealand time)
Referee: Brendon Pickerill (New Zealand)
Assistant referees: William Houston (Australia), Graham Cooper (Australia)
TMO: George Ayoub (Australia)