Kurtley Beale fails to complete Waratahs training

Last updated 16:16 01/08/2014
Kurtley Beale
SHOULDER COMPLAINT: Waratahs playmaker Kurtley Beale failed to complete their final training run in Sydney today.

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Star playmaker Kurtley Beale has failed to complete the NSW Waratahs' final training session before tomorrow night's blockbuster Super Rugby final with the Crusaders.

Beale required treatment for a shoulder complaint midway through the captain's run at Allianz Stadium, but coach Michael Cheika was not concerned enough to tinker with his bench.

Cheika has opted for a six-two split, with halfback Brendan McKibbin and winger Peter Betham his only backline reserves.

Had he considered Beale in any doubt, Cheika would have included midfield option Jono Lance - the only player in the Waratahs squad with a Super Rugby title under his belt - on the bench.

Scans this week cleared Beale of any serious damage and Waratahs fans will be sweating on the classy inside centre being at his best for the decider.

Six years ago, the Waratahs led the Crusaders in their most recent final appearance before the Wallabies ace broke down early in the second half, helping the hosts power to a 20-12 victory.

Dismissing Crusaders coach Todd Blackadder's claim they were giving up their home-ground advantage by hosting the final at ANZ Stadium, the Waratahs were comfortable enough to not even venture to Olympic Park for their captain's run.

''We've had captain's runs here all year so there's nothing new there,'' said skipper Michael Hooper.

The Waratahs have won seven from seven at their Allianz Stadium fortress in 2014, but are also unbeaten at Homebush and Hooper has no problems heading west for the showpiece final.

With more than 50,000 tickets already sold, the match is guaranteed to be the biggest crowd for a Waratahs home game in more than 100 years.

''We've already got more fans (coming) than we could have here. It would be over capacity here,'' Hooper said.

''So more people getting to experience the game, experience this unique experience - the fact we've never had a final here - it's fantastic.

''We've won two out of two there, and two tough games in the Reds and the Brumbies.

''We've done really well here, but we've also done really well out at ANZ.

''It's great that there's a Bledisloe in two weeks. It's back out there, so for fans of rugby it's fantastic, especially NSW.''

NSW WARATAHS: Israel Folau, Alofa Alofa, Adam Ashley-Cooper, Kurtley Beale, Rob Horne, Bernard Foley, Nick Phipps, Wycliff Palu, Michael Hooper (captain), Stephen Hoiles, Kane Douglas, Jacques Potgieter, Sekope Kepu, Tatafu Polota-Nau, Benn Robinson. Reserves: Tola Latu, Paddy Ryan, Jeremy Tilse, Will Skelton, Mitchell Chapman, Pat McCutcheon, Brendan McKibbin, Peter Betham.

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