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Mogg set for comeback as Wests aim for double against Royals

Jesse Mogg will play in the local Canberra competition with Wests.

Jesse Mogg will play in the local Canberra competition with Wests. Photo: Getty Images

Wests is set to be bolstered by the return of club star Jesse Mogg as it aims to complete a two-game clean sweep against Royals on Wednesday night.

Mogg will make his John I Dent Cup comeback, barring injury, when Wests plays Royals for the second time in four days.

The three-Test Wallaby is returning to his Canberra roots in an attempt to recapture his best form after being left out of the Australian squad for the mid-year series against France and being dropped to the ACT Brumbies' bench.

Royals player Steve Sione is pushed over the boundry. Click for more photos

John I Dent Cup: Royals v Wests

John I Dent Cup: Royals v Wests Photo: Jeffrey Chan

It's a major boost for Wests after it landed a big blow against Royals on Saturday, moving up the ladder with a bonus point 30-19 win at Phillip Oval.

But it was the Tuggeranong Vikings who staked their claim for a fourth consecutive premiership, thrashing competition struggler Easts 92-0 in a brutal match.

The bad news for Easts is that it will have to suit up again to play a return match against the Vikings on Wednesday night.

The opening round washout means Wests will play Royals and the Vikings will clash with Easts on Wednesday in make-up matches.

The three-day turnaround results in a bizarre preparation for both teams, with Wests to break from routine and hold its first recovery session of the year at the AIS on Sunday morning.

Mogg will add a new dimension to Wests, which charged to third on the ladder in an intense finals race.

Royals, last season's grand finalist, has dropped out of the top four but gets a chance to atone for its mistake-riddled performance.

Wests coach Craig Robberds said getting the double against Royals was crucial to setting up the club's title hopes.

"The competition is so close this year, every win is important," Robberds said.

"The washout in round one threw a lot of teams, we played one game in a month and it's taken us a bit of time to get going."

Brumbies assistant and Canberra Vikings coach Dan McKellar was at the ground to cast his eye over potential recruits for the ARU's National Rugby Championship in August.

Wests flanker Michael Smith, lock Dave McKern and centre Charlie Luteru are pushing their case while Royals fullback Tim Cornforth leads his club's selection hopes.

Wests scored four tries as it withstood a Royals fightback in the second half to clinch an 11-point win.

Giant No.8 Uelese Uelese was almost unstoppable from the back of the scrum, but it was winger Sione Fangaiuiha double that set up the win.

Fangaiuiha sealed the crucial victory with a try in the dying minutes against the run of play to put an end to Royals' hopes of a comeback.

Royals' 12 first-half turnovers crippled any chance of gaining momentum and it pushed too many passes in the second half as it chased the game.

"There were too many errors, we gave the ball back to them," said Royals coach Russell Ingram.

"We got back into in the second half but we tried too hard to do too many things and missed our chance.

"We get a chance at them again this week, maybe we can cut down on the miracle balls."


WESTS 30 (S Fangaiuiha 2, P Raines, U Uelese tries; S Uphill 2 penalties, 2 conversions) bt ROYALS 19 (P Rolando, J Swain, T Cornforth tries; P Rolando 2 conversions), GUNGAHLIN EAGLES 26 bt UNI-NORTHS OWLS 10, TUGGERANONG VIKINGS 92 bt EASTS 0.

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Round 1
Sat, 19 SepTimes shown AEST
ENG 35vs FJI 11 Report Stats
TGA 10vs GEO 17 Report Stats
IRE 50vs CAN 7 Report Stats
Sun, 20 SepTimes shown AEST
SAF 32vs JPN 34 Report Stats
FRA 32vs ITA 10 Report Stats
SAM 25vs USA 16 Report Stats
WAL 54vs URU 9 Report Stats
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NZL 26vs ARG 16 Report Stats
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SCO 45vs JPN 10 Report Stats
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AUS 28vs FJI 13 Report Stats
FRA 38vs ROM 11 Report Stats
Fri, 25 SepTimes shown AEST
NZL 58vs NAM 14 Report Stats
Sat, 26 SepTimes shown AEST
ARG 54vs GEO 9 Report Stats
ITA 23vs CAN 18 Report Stats
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SAF 46vs SAM 6 Report Stats
ENG 25vs WAL 28 Report Stats
AUS 65vs URU 3 Report Stats
SCO 39vs USA 16 Report Stats
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IRE 44vs ROM 10 Report Stats
Wed, 30 SepTimes shown AEST
TGA 35vs NAM 21 Report Stats
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WAL 23vs FJI 13 Report Stats
FRA 41vs CAN 18 Report Stats
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SAM 5vs JPN 26 Report Stats
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SAF 34vs SCO 16 Report Stats
ENG 13vs AUS 33 Report Stats
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ARG 45vs TGA 16 Report Stats
IRE 16vs ITA 9 Report Stats
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CAN 15vs ROM 17 Report Stats
FJI 47vs URU 15 Report Stats
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SAF 64vs USA 0 Report Stats
NAM 16vs GEO 17 Stats
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NZL 47vs TGA 9 Report Stats
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SAM 33vs SCO 36 Report Stats
AUS 15vs WAL 6 Report Stats
ENG 60vs URU 3 Stats
ARG 64vs NAM 19 Report Stats
Mon, 12 OctTimes shown AEDT
ITA 32vs ROM 22 Report Stats
FRA 9vs IRE 24 Report Stats
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Round 2
Sun, 18 OctTimes shown AEDT
SAF 23vs WAL 19 Stats
NZL 62vs FRA 13 Report Stats
IRE 20vs ARG 43 Report Stats
Mon, 19 OctTimes shown AEDT
AUS 35vs SCO 34 Stats
Sun, 25 OctTimes shown AEDT
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England 4 2 2 0 58 11
Fiji 4 1 3 0 -17 5
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Japan 4 3 1 0 -2 12
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Team P W L D +/- Pts
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Team P W L D +/- Pts
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