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    Waratahs pick rookie 10 for Crusaders clash

    2017-03-31 09:42

    Cape Town - Waratahs boss Daryl Gibson has named his side for Sunday's clash with the Crusaders in Sydney with Mack Mason set to make his Super Rugby debut when he steps into the No 10 jersey with Bernard Foley ruled out.

    Kick-off is at 08:05 SA time.

    "Mack’s a really calm, cool-headed young kid. We brought him down last year in November and has been working really well and he’s really earnt an opportunity to start for us," said Gibson.

    "He has been one of the top performers for the Australian Under-20’s, he’s had that experience down at the (Melbourne Storm - NRL), so he’s certainly had a widened and varied pathway to us and I’m really looking forward to him going on Sunday."

    Mason was one of the stand out players part of the Australian Under-20 side in 2016 that went on to claim victory against New Zealand.

    Further changes will see Rio Olympian Cam Clark starting at fullback with Israel Folau moving back into the centres, as Rob Horne has been ruled out due to a low grade hamstring injury.

    “Cam has been one of those guys who have been toiling away in the background - I’ve been really impressed with his performances coming off the bench,” added Gibson.

    “Certainly with Rob Horne’s injury it’s a necessity to make that change for us, pushing Israel up.

    “It’s a great opportunity for a young guy to really nail down that position and see what he can do at this level.

    Looking ahead to Sunday, Gibson stressed the importance of a full eighty-minute performance from the home side.

    "The games they have played, they’ve been behind in three of those and have come storming to win," he said. So we know if we are going to beat them we have got to play for 80 minutes and be right in there for the whole fight.”

    Teams:

    Waratahs

    15 Cam Clark, 14 Reece Robinson, 13 Israel Folau, 12 David Horwitz, 11 Andrew Kellaway, 10 Mack Mason, 9 Jake Gordon, 8 Jed Holloway, 7 Michael Hooper (captain), 6 Ned Hanigan, 5 Will Skelton, 4 Dean Mumm, 3 Sekope Kepu, 2 Tolu Latu, 1 Tom Robertson

    Substitutes: 16 Damien Fitzpatrick, 17 Paddy Ryan, 18 David Lolohea, 19 David McDuling, 20 Michael Wells, 21 Nick Phipps, 22 Irae Simone, 23 Taqele Naiyaravoro

    Crusaders

    15 David Havili, 14 Digby Ioane, 13 Tim Bateman, 12 Ryan Crotty, 11 George Bridge,10 Mitchell Hunt, 9 Mitchell Drummond, 8 Whetu Douglas, 7 Matt Todd, 6 Jordan Taufua, 5 Sam Whitelock (captain), 4 Scott Barrett, 3 Owen Franks, 2 Codie Taylor, 1 Joe Moody

    Substitutes:16 Ben Funnell, 17 Wyatt Crockett, 18 Michael Alaalatoa, 19 Luke Romano, 20 Pete Samu, 21 Bryn Hall, 22 Marty McKenzie, 23 Manasa Mataele

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    Fixtures

    Saturday, 17 February 2018
    • Stormers v Jaguares, Cape Town 15:05
    • Lions v Sharks, Emirates Airlines Park 17:15
    Friday, 23 February 2018
    • Highlanders v Blues, 08:35
    • Rebels v Reds, AAMI Park 10:45
    Saturday, 24 February 2018
    • Sunwolves v Brumbies, Prince Chichibu Memorial Stadium 06:15
    • Crusaders v Chiefs, 08:35
    • Waratahs v Stormers, Allianz Stadium 10:45
    • Lions v Jaguares, Emirates Airlines Park 15:05
    • Bulls v Hurricanes, Loftus Versfeld 17:15

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