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Thread: Samu injury adds to Cheika's headaches

  1. #1
    Immortal Contributor The InnFORCEr's Avatar
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    Feb 2006
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    Samu injury adds to Cheika's headaches

    Yesterday at 6:16 PM The Rugby Championship
    by Beth Newman

    The absence of Wallabies flanker Lukhan Tui on tour to Africa and Argentina could be compounded with backrower Pete Samu also under an injury cloud.

    Samu has been in Canberra this week and Australia is still waiting on the results of scans on a knee injury suffered against the Pumas. The rookie Wallabies forward came off the field in the second half.

    There is yet to be a call made either way on Samu but with the Wallabies' South Africa-Argentina tour beginning in just four days, there is an urgent question mark hanging over his fitness.

    Wallabies coach Michael Cheika is set to name the squad on Friday, and with Michael Hooper having also missed the Pumas Test with a hamstring injury, he is facing headaches right across his backrow.

    Samu came off holding his knee after 43 minutes against the Pumas, before being replaced by Ned Hanigan.

    The flanker was parachuted into the starting team in Brisbane after the late withdrawal of David Pocock and was again a last-minute starter on the Gold Coast with Michael Hooper (hamstring) ruled out.

    Only time will tell if Hooper can fully shake off a recurrence of the hamstring issue that forced him out for the final month of Super Rugby, though Cheika was confident after Saturday's game that the skipper would be joining the team on tour.

    Tui's chances of being on the plane appear slim after the sudden loss of his stepfather last week and the fall out of an ugly post-match altercation between the Reds forward and a Wallabies fan.

    The 21-year-old was involved in a post-match scuffle with a fan after Australia's shock loss to Argentina and subsequently told teammates he was planning to take time away from the game. Cheika said on Sunday the rookie was unlikely to make the trip to South Africa.

    Queensland's Caleb Timu would likely be the next backrower to step into the team should there be an absence, with the no. 8 the spare loose forward in Australia's squad in recent weeks.

    If Michael Cheika has to look beyond that, the NRC has showcased some in-form backrowers and that could open the door for another Wallabies debutant or a return to some of the capped players plying their trades in the provincial competition.

    Melbourne's Angus Cottrell has been on the Wallabies radar before and his combative form with the Rising so far in the NRC would not hurt his prospects should a spot need to be filled.

    Queensland forwards Liam Wright and Adam Korczyk have also trained with Wallabies squads in the past year and could shape as outsiders for a call-up.

    Melbourne's Richard Hardwick, Sydney's Will Miller and Chris Alcock, from the Western Force, have all been in excellent form as well.

    Sydney flanker Jack Dempsey was one of Australia's breakout Test stars last year and made a promising return from injury against Brisbane City, but the 24-year-old is being meticulously managed after nearly a year out of the game.

    Dempsey played just 31 minutes against Brisbane in what was his first outing nearly 11 months after suffering a hamstring injury against the Barbarians.

    Australia's squad for the two-week tour will be named on Friday, ahead of the team's Saturday departure for Port Elizabeth.

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  2. #2
    Veteran Bakkies's Avatar
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    There needs to be a proper blindside in the mould of O'Mahony, Kaino not a lock covering the spot. Green and Gold talked up du Toit however the ABs and Wallabies didn't target his weaknesses. Nick Mallet did some very good analysis in how Ben Youngs targeted du Toit. Youngs doesn't have the running game of Smith and Genia but lead to du Toit getting caught out in defence.

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  3. #3
    Champion valzc's Avatar
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    I get that Tui is having a rough time - with his stepdad dying & fangate. But why was he made to play so soon on Saturday in that case? And how can a professional player just cancel himself out for the rest of the year like that? I'm thinking of all the guys who're busting a gut to be selected, and others who have had tough times to get through while playing and maybe I'm being harsh but it looks a bit like he's chucking his toys out of the cot.

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  4. #4
    Veteran sittingbison's Avatar
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    Jeez valzc, don't let common sense enter the debate

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  5. #5
    Immortal Contributor shasta's Avatar
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    Tui would not be the first sportsman to pull out for a time for personal or health reasons. Buddy, Greg Inglis, Johnathon Trott. Not saying that's the reason. Just sayin.

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