Super Rugby

Horwitz to replace Beale for Waratahs

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Kurtley Beale’s Super Rugby season ending knee injury has opened the door for replacement David Horwitz to step up at second five-eighth against the Crusaders in Christchurch on Friday.

Beale’s will not play Super Rugby again this season after he was injured in the opening minute of last week’s match against the Bulls.

The back-liner has already signed for English club Wasps so unless he returns to Australia in two years time he could have played his final Super Rugby match.

Horwitz came off the replacements bench for Beale and has started in four of the Waratahs’ 10 Super Rugby matches this year and it is understood that Daryl Gibson will stick with the 21-year-old this weekend.

Gibson has joked about moving Israel Folau at inside centre but he does have the option of starting Matt Carraro at 12 instead of using him off the bench.

Winger Rob Horne, who has played at second receiver for the Waratahs, has backed Gibson to continue with Horwitz at 12 after playing most of the match against the Bulls in the position.

“He (Horwitz) went well coming off on the bench on the weekend having limited preparation, so I thought he played well and he’ll be better for the run,” Horne told the Sydney Morning Herald.

“Whenever time you get out there you definitely go better for that. Experience is something you only get by doing, so he’s done that. He came in early … and then spent time continually learning behind Kurtley.”

Horwitz admits that he will need to be more clinical on Friday if the Waratahs are to earn their first victory in Christchurch against the Crusaders.

“They’re such an attacking outfit that you have to be on to give yourself a chance and if you’re slightly off you’re going to have a long day,” Horne said.

Horne said that Beale was in reasonable spirits after going under the knife on Monday and said that it was up to the team to lift in his absence.

“You don’t replace someone like that,” Horne said.

“He’s a major part of our side. His personality too is a big loss having him just not around everyday, so that’s going to be tough but I think the onus is on every player to step up and try and contribute even more.”

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