What a way to finish Round 9 of the 2022 Super Rugby Pacific as we turn our attention between the Australian and New Zealand teams battling each other with six rounds left to go. NSW Waratahs were off to a stellar start in the 1st half with a decent lead ahead of half-time at 7-24, while Western Force began to make up lost time with three tries on the board in the 2nd half alone. However, the game has already handed over to the Tahs by that stage when they’re too good to pull off a comfortable win at HBF Park in Perth. The final score is 24-41.
NSW Waratahs looked outstanding; left, right, center, tonight; on all fronts. Their first-half spell was unbelievable when the Tahs rack up three tries on the board off the back of the Force’s poor start, such as; Mark Nawaquanitawase, Lalakai Foketi & Michael Hooper. And they continued to extend their winning margin alongside the double try brace from Alex Newsome after the half-time break, even though there were some mistakes with the ill-discipline and that blunder at one point from Dylan Pietsch on the left-wing. It’s nice to see the Tahs high & flying now in 5th on the ladder under new coach Darren Coleman; players such as Michael Hooper & Jed Holloway, who have returned from overseas, will play a key role in their playoff push & the development of the Tahs youngsters.
Western Force just still held on to their place within the Playoffs bubble in 8th; they need to start acting fast now if they want to stay there, especially with the New Zealand teams around the corner for the remaining six rounds this season beginning next weekend. There’s no problem with their defensive shape that helped the Force win a couple of penalties. Although, they can be patient when building some pressure with the ball going forward. However, they only dominated the 2nd half alone with three tries on top of one lone big score in the first 40. They need more support with the executions & cut the ill-discipline from the start if the Force wants to stay in this fight by winning games.
The Tahs will open the Super Round at 6 pm AEST with the Chiefs from Waikato in Hamilton, NZ, where all of the Round 10 games are held at AAMI Park in Melbourne next Friday. Meanwhile, the Force has an opportunity to strike back when they take on Moana Pasifika straight after this Tahs v Chiefs match-up at 8.30 pm AEST.