Team News - Wallabies return for Waratahs Culture Round clash with Highlanders

Wed, Apr 26, 2023, 1:55 AM
Waratahs Media
by Waratahs Media
Darren Coleman has welcomed back six Wallabies to his starting XV to take on the Highlanders
Darren Coleman has welcomed back six Wallabies to his starting XV to take on the Highlanders

The NSW Waratahs have named their team to face the Highlanders in Culture Round (Round 10) of the Harvey Norman Super Rugby Pacific competition.

Waratahs Head Coach Darren Coleman has bolstered his side by adding six Wallabies to his starting XV that lost to the Blues in Auckland.

Dave Porecki returns to the starting side with Mahe Vailanu reverting to the bench, while Te Tera Faulkner replaces the injured Tom Lambert to complete an all-Wallaby front-row alongside Harry Johnson-Holmes.

Hugh Sinclair makes a welcome return from a shoulder injury suffered against the Rebels in Round three, partnering the competitions leading lineout stealer, Jed Holloway, in the second row.

Coleman has added two Wallabies to his backrow with Michael Hooper returning to the side after completing his national resting, while Langi Gleeson returns from a calf injury suffered against the Hurricanes in round four.

Jake Gordon continues his all-Wallaby partnership with Ben Donaldson in the halves, while Wallaby rested Lalakai Foketi resumes his devastating combination in the midfield with Izaia Perese.

Max Jorgensen returns to fullback, with Wallaby rested Mark Nawaqanitawase joining Dylan Pietsch on the wings. It will be a special night for the team, as the Waratahs will be wearing their 2023 First Nations jersey for this round which has been designed by Dylan Pietsch.

Coleman has again gone with a traditional five-three split for his finishers, with Mosese Tuipulotu in line to make a return from a knee injury suffered against the Hurricanes.

Darren Coleman said: “We’re excited to be back at Allianz Stadium, I felt like we put on a good performance for our fans the last time we were there.”

“We’ve been inconsistent to date, but we’re really excited about the run home and the number of games we have at Allianz. The team is focused on finishing the season strong and getting into the finals in form and healthy.

“It’s great to welcome back several high-quality players with Porecki, Sinclair, Hooper and Gleeson who will add some punch to our forward pack whilst Lalakai and Marky provide a real spark for our attack.

“Mosese Tuipulotu showed a lot of exciting pre-season form and some glimpses against the Hurricanes before he injured his knee, and we’re excited to see some impact from him in the second half.”


1 Te Tera Faulkner (Southern Districts/ Moorabin Rams/ Marist College Canberra) 2 Dave Porecki (Manly/ Manly Roos/ Redlands) 3 Harry Johnson-Holmes (Sydney Uni/ Cowra Eagles/ Merewether High School) 4 Jed Holloway (Southern Districts/ Yamba Buccaneers/ Waverley College) 5 Hugh Sinclair (Northern Suburbs/ Lindfield/ SHORE) 6 Taleni Seu (Southern Districts/ Grammar Tech/ Onehunga High School) 7 Michael Hooper (Manly/ Manly Roos/ St Pius X College) 8 Langi Gleeson (Manly/ Harbord Harlequins/ St Augustine’s College) 9 Jake Gordon © (Sydney Uni/ Canterbury/ Blackwattle Bay) 10 Ben Donaldson (Randwick/ Clovelly Eagles/ Waverly College) 11 Dylan Pietsch (Randwick/ Leeton Phantoms/ Kings School) 12 Lalakai Foketi (Manly/ Manly Roos/ Kings School) 13 Izaia Perese (Randwick/ Aspley State School/ Anglican Church Grammar) 14 Mark Nawaqanitawase (Eastwood/ St Patrick’s College) 15 Max Jorgensen (Randwick/ Balmain Juniors/ St Joseph’s College) Replacements: 16 Mahe Vailanu (Gordon/ Melbourne Harlequins/ Auckland Grammar) 17 Nephi Leatigaga (Randwick/ Manurewa Rugby Club/ Manurewa High School) 18 Daniel Botha (Sydney Uni/ Mosman/ Scots College) 20 Charlie Gamble (Eastern Suburbs/ Saracens/ St Bede’s College) 19 Will Harris (Eastern Suburbs/ Hunters Hill Juniors/ Scots College) 21 Harrison Goddard (Gordon/ Dural/ Oakhill College) 22 Joey Walton (Gordon/ Warnervale Wildcats/ Wadalba High School) 23 Mosese Tuipulotu (Eastern Suburbs/ Southern Districts (VIC) / St Kevin’s College Melbourne)

Players unavailable for selection: Angus Bell – Toe (Season) Harry Wilson – HIA (Round 11) Ned Hanigan – HIA (Round 11+) Nemani Nadolo – Knee (Round 13+) Tane Edmed – Back (Round 11+) Tom Lambert – Knee (Round 12+) Will Harrison - ACL (Season)

Players Available for Shute Shield Archer Holz (Eastern Suburbs) Ben Dowling (Randwick) Jack Bowen (Eastern Suburbs) Hunter Ward (Manly) Michael Icely (Eastwood) Sateki Latu (Warringah) Teddy Wilson (Eastern Suburbs) Tiaan Tauakipulu (Randwick) Tolu Latu (Western Sydney) Zac Von Appen (Sydney Uni) Zane Marolt (Eastern Suburbs)