Rugby Union


Western Force hit hard with injuries

The Western Force have been hit hard by injury, with backs Nick Cummins, Napolioni Nalaga and Cameron Shepherd ruled out of Saturday night's Super Rugby clash with the NSW Waratahs in Sydney.

The minor setbacks to Cummins (calf), Nalaga (rolled ankle) and Shepherd (adductor) will see new short-term signing David Harvey and former NRL player Will Tupou make their Super Rugby debuts.

Harvey, a five eighth signed to a four-game deal earlier this week, will line up at fullback, while Tupou has been slotted in at outside centre.

All up, Force coach Richard Graham has made seven changes to the run-on side which slumped to a 46-19 home loss at the hands of the Hurricanes last week.

Alfie Mafi and Samu Wara have been named on the wings, Angus Cottrell replaces Richard Brown at flanker, prop Pek Cowan returns to the starting line-up, and Sam Wykes will partner Nathan Sharpe in the second row.

The Force are yet to win a game this season, while the Waratahs have snared just one win from three matches.

Western Force: David Harvey, Samu Wara, Will Tupou, Rory Sidey, Alfie Mafi, James Stannard, Brett Sheehan, Matt Hodgson, David Pocock (capt), Angus Cottrell, Nathan Sharpe, Sam Wykes, Salesi Ma'afu, Nathan Charles, Pek Cowan. Res: Ben Whittaker, Kieran Longbottom, Phoenix Battye, Richard Brown, Justin Turner, Ben Seymour, Winston Stanley.