Sydney - Wallaby star Israel Folau scored a dazzling hat-trick of tries as
the Waratahs launched their Super Rugby season with a sizzling 43-21 bonus
point win over Western Force on Sunday.
Folau took up where he left off in last year's trailblazing debut season
with three tries in the Waratahs' six tries-to-two win over Force in Sydney.
The fullback scored in the opening minute and added a second off a Wycliff
Palu break and completed his hat-trick of tries in the 66th minute.
Folau has now scored 11 career Super Rugby tries after making the switch to
rugby last year where he also scored 10 tries in 15 internationals for the
"Izzy certainly knows his way to the try-line and he's following on
from last year," Waratahs captain Dave Dennis said.
"Three tries straight up. He's a great player for us and the guys
worked hard to give him those opportunities which was more important.
"The set piece is a strength of ours and we have a great back-line so
we have to make sure we are on to the set piece and give them the opportunity
It was a lively opening game for the Waratahs, who led 22-11 at half-time
and clinched their bonus-point fourth try in the 57th minute through forward
It was the first time since round five in 2012 that the Waratahs have picked
up a four-try bonus point in Super Rugby.
Fellow Wallaby Kurtley Beale, back with the Waratahs after a short stint at
the Melbourne Rebels, impressed at inside-centre and featured in several of the
team's passing rushes.
Beale dashed over for the Waratahs' sixth try in the final minutes.
Fly-half Bernard Foley finished with 13 points from five conversions and a
The Waratahs have been the under-achievers in Super Rugby despite their
all-star line-up and made a strong start to the season under coach Michael
Execution eluded the Waratahs too often, with the new-look playmaking
combination of Foley and Beale lacking cohesion early in a mistake-riddled
But the intention was there for the Waratahs, as they stuck with their
attack-at-all-costs game plan.
Springbok hardman Jacques Potgieter came on in the second half and soon
became involved with the Force's South African contingent in robust exchanges.
The Force battled hard despite being outgunned out wide and finished with
tries to Wallaby winger Nick Cummins and centre Kyle Godwin.
The Perth-based team had a scare when their South African flanker Brynard
Stander was taken from the field on a medi-cab with his neck in a precautionary
brace late in the match.
Tries: Israel Folau (3), Alofa Alofa, Kane Douglas, Kurtley Beale
Conversions: Bernard Foley (5)
Tries: Nick Cummins, Kyle Godwin
Conversion: Zack Holmes
Penalties: Holmes (3) Teams:Waratahs
15 Israel Folau, 14 Alofa Alofa, 13 Adam
Ashley-Cooper, 12 Kurtley Beale, 11 Peter Betham, 10 Bernard Foley, 9
Nick Phipps, 8 Wycliff Palu, 7 Michael Hooper, 6 Dave Dennis, 5 Kane
Douglas, 4 Will Skelton, 3 Paddy Ryan, 2 Tatafu Polota-Nau, 1 Benn
Substitutes: 16 Tola Latu, 17 Jeremy Tilse, 18 Sekope
Kepu, 19 Jacques Potgieter, 20 Stephen Hoiles/Pat McCutcheon, 21 Brendan
McKibbin, 22 Rob Horne, 23 Matt Carraro/Cam CrawfordForce
15. Luke Morahan, 14. Marcel Brache, 13. Junior Rasolea,
12. Kyle Godwin, 11. Nick Cummins, 10. Sias Ebersohn, 9. Alby Mathewson,
8. Ben McCalman, 7. Matthew Hodgson (Captain), 6. Chris Alcock, 5. Hugh
McMeniman, 4. Sam Wykes, 3. Oli Hoskins, 2. Nathan Charles, 1. Pekahou
Substitutes: 16. Heath Tessmann, 17. Tetera
Faulkner, 18. Kieran Longbottom, 19. Wilhelm Steenkamp, 20. Brynard
Stander, 21. Ian Prior, 22. Zack Holmes, 23. Patrick Dellit