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We are just under 20 minutes away from kick off in Sydney.
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The last time these two met the Force won 40-11 but one feels today may be a bit different. The Tahs' have been in shocking form in 2020 but this match offers them the opportunity to get their season back on track.
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Force – 15 Jack McGregor, 14 Byron Ralston, 13 Marcel Brache, 12 Nick Jooste, 11 Brad Lacey, 10 Jono Lance, 9 Ian Prior, 8 Brynard Stander, 7 Tevin Ferris, 6 Henry Stowers, 5 Fergus Lee Warner, 4 Jeremy Thrush, 3 Kieran Longbottom, 2 Feleti Kaitu’u, 1 Angus Wagner. Subs: 16 Andrew Ready, 17 Chris Heiberg, 18 Greg Holmes, 19 Johan Bardoul 20 Ollie Callan, 21 Jacob Abel, 22 Henry Taefy, 23 Kyle Godwin.
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Waratahs – 15 Jack Maddocks, 14 James Ramm, 13 Alex Newsome, 12 Joey Walton, 11 Mark Nawaqanitawase, 10 Will Harrison, 9 Mitch Short, 8 Will Harris, 7 Michael Hooper, 6 Lachlan Swinton, 5 Rob Simmons (c), 4 Ned Hanigan, 3 Harry Johnson-Holmes, 2 Robbie Abel, 1 Angus Bell. Subs: 16 Tom Horton, 17 Tetera Faulkner, 18 Tiaan Tauakipulu, 19 Tom Staniforth, 20 Jack Dempsey, 21 Michael Mcdonald, 22 Ben Donaldson/Tepai Moeroa, 23 Karmichael Hunt.
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We are just over two hours away from kick off in Sydney. Stay with us for all the live action.
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The Western Force make their return to Super Rugby for the first time since being booted out at the end of the 2017 season. Surprisingly the Force finished second in the Aussie conference that season.
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Hello and welcome to our live coverage over the Super Rugby AU clash between the Waratahs and Western Force at the Sydney Cricket Ground.
1'
KICK OFF! 0-0. Waratahs get us underway at the Sydney Cricket Ground and the Force collect.
3'
Lacey is penalised for taking a player in the air. Tah's set the line-out up just outside the Force 22.
6'
Force with their first attack of the game make some meters into the Waratahs 22 and win a free kick on the 5m line.
9'
Sloppy start to the match with both sides making handling errors. Very stop-start at the moment.
12'
It has been a bit of a kicking contest the opening 12 minutes as both struggle to hold onto possession for more than a few phases at a time.
14'
PENALTY! FORCE! PRICE! 0-0. The Force take the lead through a 40 meter penalty by Prior. Good kick for their first points in Super Rugby since 2017.
17'
The Force win a scrum penalty inside their own half and clear towards the Tahs' 22.
21'
Neither team managing to get a foothold in the match as yet. Far too many errors.
24'
Force back on the attack inside the Waratahs 22 but make another handling error which allows the Waratahs to clear via a scrum.
27'
Maddocks looking very comfortable at fullback but the Waratahs need to get him into the game more on attack.
29'
TRY! FORCE! RALSTON! 0-8. Eventually the Force manage to put some phases together before they go wide. Quick hands allows Ralston some space, he beats one defender to dot down in the corner.
30'
Price misses the conversion from the right hand touchline.
33'
PENALTY! FORCE! PRICE! 0-11. Force starting to pull away here as Price sinks a penalty from 35 meters out, pretty much in front.
36'
PENALTY! FORCE! PRICE! 0-14. Offside against the Waratahs and now the Force are starting to create a big gap.
40'
HALF TIME! 7-14. The Force lead at the break in what has been a pretty dull match with far too many errors. Expected from the Force who have not played together in competitive rugby. Hopefully we see a far better second half.
40'
CONVERSION! WARATAHS! HARRISON! 7-17. Harrison adds the extras about 7 meters in from touch. Good kick to end the half.
40'
TRY! WARATAHS! BELL! 5-14. Waratahs get on the board eventually. They turn down the three points, set up a line-out and get to within a meter of the line. Bell dives over from close range to get the Tahs' first points.
41'
KICK OFF! 7-14. Force get us underway in the second half. The Waratahs will want to produce a lot better in the next 40 minutes.
45'
Waratahs have a penalty beneath the uprights after going through 14 phases. Far better from the hosts and some good continuity in that attack.
46'
PENALTY! WARATAHS! HARRISON! 10-14. Harrison sinks an easy penalty as the Tahs' close the gap to 4 points.
49'
Waratahs straight back onto the attack but the Force win a penalty on their own 22.
51'
Waratahs have the Force under pressure on their own line but they go off their feet in the counter-ruck. Force get another relieving penalty.
54'
Waratahs costing themselves again. Skew throw into the line-out on attack hands the Force another opportunity to relieve the pressure.
58'
It was a good opening 10 minutes after the break for the Waratahs but too many errors have swung momentum back the way of the Force.
61'
PENALTY! WARATAHS! HARRISON! 13-14. Easy kick for Harrison to make it a one point game.
63'
TRY! WARATAHS! STANIFORTH! 18-14. The Waratahs have the lead for the first in the match as Staniforth drives over from close range.
64'
CONVERSION! HARRISON! 20-14. The Waratahs take a six point lead as Harrison slots an easy kick.
66'
Force with a chance to hit back immediately but a handling error inside the Tahs' 22 once again costs them.
70'
Force trying to run from their own half which has proven tough all night. The kick eventually comes and the Waratahs win a penalty on halfway.
73'
PENALTY! WARATAHS! HARRISON! 23-14. Another simple kick for Harrison as the Force go offside. The visitors will have to score twice now.
77'
Waratahs attack again but it ends in a 22 drop out for the Force. It looks all but over now.
80'
FULL TIME! 23-14. The Force were impressive in the first half and took a 14-0 lead before the Tahs' scored on half time. The second half it was all the Waratahs as the Force inexperience and lack of quality began to tell. Not the best game of rugby that.
NSW Waratahs
Western Force
2
Tries
1
39' Gus Bell
61' Tom Staniforth
28' Byron Ralston
2
Conversions
0
40' Will Harrison
63' Will Harrison
3
Penalties
3
45' Will Harrison
59' Will Harrison
73' Will Harrison
13' Ian Prior
32' Ian Prior
35' Ian Prior
0
Drop Goals
0
0
Yellow Cards
0
0
Red Cards
0
15
Squad
15
Gus Bell
Robbie Abel
Harry Johnson-Holmes
Ned Hanigan
Rob Simmons
Lachlan Swinton
Michael Hooper
William Harris
Mitch Short
Will Harrison
Mark Nawaqanitawase
Joey Walton
Alex Newsome
James Ramm
Jack Maddocks
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
Angus Wagner
Feleti Kaitu'u
Kieran Longbottom
Jeremy Thrush
Fergus Lee-Warner
Henry Stowers
Tevin Ferris
Brynard Stander
Ian Prior
Jono Lance
Brad Lacey
Nick Jooste
Marcel Brache
Byron Ralston
Jack McGregor
8
Reserves
8
Tom Horton
Tetera Faulkner
Tiaan Tauakipulu
Tom Staniforth
Jack Dempsey
Michael McDonald
Karmichael Hunt
Ben Donaldson
16
17
18
19
20
21
22
23
Andrew Ready
Chris Heiberg
Greg Holmes
Johan Bardoul
Oliver Callan
Jacob Abel
Henry Taefu
Kyle Godwin