Waratahs to recall Barnes and Horne
March 12, 2013
Berrick Barnes has been absent with a knee injury © Getty Images
New South Wales Waratahs coach Michael Cheika expects Berrick Barnes to return for the Super Rugby match against the Cheetahs at Allianz Stadium on Friday. Barnes missed the opening three rounds of the Super Rugby season with a knee injury sustained during a training session with Sydney University in January.
Rob Horne is also likely to return after recovering from a hamstring injury, though Cheika is yet to decide whether the inside backs will start against the Cheetahs or play from the bench after the Waratahs lost 35-6 to the Brumbies in Canberra on Saturday.
The coach described as "unacceptable" the team's performance in the last 15 minutes of the match against the Brumbies, saying on Monday that "we have to make sacrifices to win those battles, whether it's against the Brumbies or against the Cheetahs or against anyone".
"And that's something that the players are going to learn along the way, because if they don't do it then they won't get picked," Cheika said.
"Just work hard and make the sacrifices that are required to get the satisfaction at the end of the game."
The Waratahs have made an erratic start to their season - losing two of their three games - but the Cheetahs are full of confidence after beating the Highlanders convincingly in New Zealand, and Cheika knows his team faces a tough match in Sydney.
"They play a very good style of rugby and I think they've got a very clear identity of themselves, so they're prepared to play their style of game no matter what," Cheika said.
Wallabies hooker Tatafu Polota-Nau is likely to miss the Cheetahs match with the hamstring injury that saw him leave the pitch against the Brumbies.
The Brumbies were far too good for the Waratahs (vision available in Australia only)