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ARU gives Israel Folau green light to return for Bulls match

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The Waratahs' attacking firepower for their must-win clash against the Bulls on Saturday night has been recharged with the return of Israel Folau to the starting side from injury.

The Waratahs said on Tuesday they would name Folau for the match at Allianz Stadium, but that they needed to first receive the ARU's clearance for him to play.

On Wednesday, the ARU confirmed that Folau has been cleared to play. It put to an end – for now, at least – a controversy which placed the Waratahs at loggerheads with the ARU for its handling of the issue.

Last Friday, the ARU ruled out Folau from playing for the Waratahs in last Saturday's game against the Force in Perth over concerns for his throat injury, even though he had been declared fit to play by NSW and named in the run-on team.

Folau, who last week was replaced at fullback by Jono Lance who returns to the bench, will now take his place in the back line.

Meanwhile, a SANZAR judiciary to hear charges against Waratahs coach Michael Cheika following his verbal clash with a television cameraman during NSW's game against Sharks in South Africa will now be held on April 24 after it was postponed from Wednesday afternoon.


According to SANZAR, the change in dates for the teleconference hearing to next Thursday and that was granted by Judicial officer Nigel Hampton QC came at the request of Cheika's legal representative.

A SANZAR statement said: "... SANZAR and its witnesses were ready to proceed with the hearing today [Wednesday] but the primary consideration was to ensure Mr Cheika's legal representative the proper opportunity to prepare the case.

"SANZAR is eager to have the matter heard as soon as possible but did not oppose the application."