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Waratahs rest Wallabies against Sunwolves

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Waratahs Super Rugby head coach Daryl Gibson has opted to rest some of his Wallabies for their match against the Sunwolves in Newcastle on Friday.

As part of the World Cup player management agreement in place, Gibson has opted to rest Wallabies players Bernard Foley, Jack Dempsey and Adam Ashley-Cooper.

The rotation provides to opportunity for Mack Mason to get his first start of the season with Michael Wells, Lachlan Swinton and Karmichael Hunt promoted off the bench.

Also returning to the starting XV will be Curtis Rona on the wing. Tom Staniforth returns to the squad after missing the opening rounds of the season with a right ankle injury.

For the first time in Super Rugby history, the NSW Waratahs are heading to Newcastle’s McDonald Jones Stadium and coach Daryl Gibson said the team are excited about the opportunity.

“We really have seen this season as an opportunity to take our game to our fans right across New South Wales and we are looking forward to playing in Newcastle on Friday night,” said Gibson.

“The Newcastle region has a great rugby community and our whole squad coaches included, will be spending time over the coming days within the Newcastle and Central Coast region working with coaches, clubs, schools and the broader community.

“This round for us will be celebrating country rugby and with close to 30 per cent of the squad hailing from the regional NSW, we recognise just how important country rugby is to our player pathways,” he said.

Waratahs

15 Israel Folau, 14 Cam Clark, 13 Karmichael Hunt, 12 Kurtley Beale, 11 Curtis Rona, 10 Mack Mason, 9 Nick Phipps, 8 Michael Wells, 7 Michael Hooper (captain), 6 Lachlan Swinton, 5 Rob Simmons, 4 Ned Hanigan, 3 Sekope Kepu, 2 Damien Fitzpatrick, 1 Harry Johnson-Holmes

Replacements: 16 Andrew Tuala, 17 Rory O’Connor, 18 Chris Talakai, 19 Ryan McCauley, 20 Tom Staniforth, 21 Jake Gordon, 22 Lalakai Foketi, 23 Alex Newsome

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