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Papali'i expects 'barbarous' Brumbies

NEWS: All Black loose forward Dalton Papali’i expects a determined Brumbies outfit who’ll be out for revenge in their Super Rugby semifinal this Friday at Eden Park.


In April, the Blues recorded an astonishing 46-7 victory over the Canberra-based side, scoring seven tries to one at the same venue for the semifinal.

This Friday’s semifinal will be a repeat of that clash and Papali’i expects the Brumbies to be much better this time around who went on to win all their seven games since that rout at the hands of the Blues.

“It’s going to be a tough one, especially with the Brumbies coming over here, they are going to throw the kitchen sink at us,” the 32-Test All Black told reporters on Wednesday.

“We are leaving no stone unturned coming into this game. We know the Brumbies are going to be coming here with a vengeance.”

Papali’i will don the captain’s armband in the absence of regular captain Patrick Tuipulotu who suffered a knee injury in their quarterfinal win over the Fijian Drua.

A record on the line.

No Australian side has ever won a knockout match in New Zealand, but according to Papali’i, that statistic means nothing come kick-off.


“We have a sort of rivalry with these boys [the Brumbies] every time we play them, you know it’s going to be a physical game.”

Brumbies employing their ‘bomb squad’

Brumbies head coach Stephen Larkham opted for a six-two split on his bench for this clash with experienced prop James Slipper coming into the starting line-up after recovering from a calf strain.

“The majority of the Blues game comes through their forwards, they have one of the biggest packs in the competition, they are pretty dominant with their scrum, maul and ball carrying,” said the former Wallaby.

“We want to make sure we have guys to come on for the back end of the game to bring some energy.”


Watch the exclusive reveal-all episode of Walk the Talk with Ardie Savea as he chats to Jim Hamilton about the RWC 2023 experience, life in Japan, playing for the All Blacks and what the future holds. Watch now for free on RugbyPass TV

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