Dave Dennis Picture: Greg Wood/foxsports.com.au
The Waratahs will be looking to break a four game losing streak against the Reds when the sides meet at ANZ Stadium on Saturday night. Unfortunately for spectators, both sides have been weakened by the withdrawal of players that featured for Australia against the British and Irish Lions last weekend, although the contest is still sure to be played with the intensity that these matches are famed for.
Israel Folau, Wycliff Palu and Adam Ashley-Cooper are all unavailable after picking up knocks in the Wallabies 41-16 defeat to the Lions at ANZ Stadium last Saturday night. Berrick Barnes has been named at inside centre in his last match for the Waratahs before he moves to Japan next season, while Sitaleki Timani, Tom Carter, Tom Kingston and John Ulugia will also be lining up for New South Wales for the final time. Tatafu Polota Nau and Drew Mitchell are unavailable due to injury.
In the absence of James Horwill and Will Genia, prop James Slipper will captain the Reds in what is also his 50th appearance for Queensland. He is one of two Reds players set to lineup after featuring for the Wallabies last weekend, while Liam Gill and Quade Cooper will be out to press their claims for a recall to the national team for the Rugby Championship which begins next month.
The Waratahs are out of contention for a berth in the Super Rugby finals going into the final round of fixtures, while the Reds have already secured a place in the post-season. Just where they will be playing next week is yet to be decided however, with next week’s opponent still to be confirmed. The Reds have won the past four meetings between these sides, and triumphed 25-17 when the pair met at Suncorp Stadium in February. New South Wales will be confident of turning the tables here however, having won five in a row in Sydney and four of their past six at all venues.
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