Western Force not intimidated by the Waratahs

Western Force halfback Alby Mathewson says that they are not intimidated by facing the Waratahs in their Super Rugby opening match in Sydney on Sunday.

The Waratahs have a strong backline which includes internationals Israel Folau, Kurtley Beale, Adam Ashley-Cooper, Rob Horne, Nick Phipps and Bernard Foley giving them firepower across the field.

In contrast the Western Force have just three internationals in their whole team in winger Nick Cummins, one-Test Wallaby Luke Morahan and former All Black Mathewson (four caps).

The Waratahs also have a wealth of talent and experience in their forward which makes them favourites to win the match in Sydney.

Mathewson however says that the Waratahs have some weaknesses and the Force can expose them.

“Attacking wise, the Waratahs are really strong. They’ve probably got Wallabies on the bench,” Mathewson told AAP.

“But they’ve got to tackle as well.”

“We’ve seen some things that we can exploit in the backline.

“They move players around on defence to protect them. It’s obviously for a reason.

“There’s no reason why our backs can’t go head-to-head with them.

“We’ve got the Honey Badger (Nick Cummins), who’s a Wallabies winger.

“Luke Morahan has been unreal for us through the pre-season. And with Junior (Rasolea) and Kyle (Godwin) there, I don’t think there’s anything to worry about.”

The Force are still finalising their backline for Sunday but they are expected have at least two new players with Morahan likely to feature at fullback and former Brumbies playmaker Zack Holmes to start at 10.

Sunday’s Super Rugby opener will be Mathewson’s 100th Super Rugby match.

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