Double boost for Waratahs
August 11, 2004

The Waratahs have re-signed Wallaby prop Matt Dunning, and also lured Wycliff Palu back to rugby.

Dunning has signed a new three-year deal that keeps him with the team until the end of the 2007 Super 12 season, much to the delight of him, New South Wales coach Ewen McKenzie and Australian coach Eddie Jones.

"It's pretty exciting to be signed up for the next three years," Dunning said. "I love playing for the Waratahs and it's a great honour to be a Wallaby. NSW is my home and I'm really looking forward to playing Super 12 next year particularly with my 50th cap only two matches away."

"Matt's progression is really impressive," McKenzie added. "He's come through the system and he's developing into a versatile player. "Natural talent can only take you so far and it's all the hard training and technique work that is paying off now for Matt."

"From a Wallaby perspective, Matt has put his head down and worked very hard on his game," Jones said. "His application off the paddock has impressed everyone and he will continue to develop. He's a fine player with a positive drive to continually improve his Rugby."

The Waratahs are also pleased that former Manly No.8 Palu, who is currently playing for rugby league club St George Illawarra's Premier League side, has agreed to return.

"Palu is a very big guy who is a dynamic ball carrier, impact tackler while possessing excellent passing skills," McKenzie said.

"We identified Palu as a player with the physique and skill that we need in the back row, and he was keen to come back to the Waratahs after a year with the Dragons."

"I'm really grateful for the opportunity that the Dragons gave me and I want to complete what I started this season," Palu added. "But rugby is where I want to be and I'm really keen to have another go with the Waratahs which have an exciting side and impressive coaching staff."

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