Izaia Perese could return for Varatas against the Chiefs in the quarter-finals

As the 2022 Super Rugby Pacific season moves into knockout mode, NSW Waratahs will give game-breaking center Izaia Perese and Harry Johnson-Holmes every chance to prove their fitness.

Varatus coach Darren Coleman has announced that eight quarter-finalists will have to face three sudden deaths to snatch the trophy.

Even blues coach Leon MacDonald is feeling nervous as his table-toppers head for a record 13th win with a 20-17 win over Waratah against second-string side Waratah in Sydney on Saturday night.

Click here to see the playoff match up and time

“We don’t want to stop at 13. It will be a disaster,” McDonald said before the Blues’ quarter-final against the Highlanders in Auckland on Saturday night.

The Highlanders pushed Western Force to eighth place after capturing a valuable bonus point of 31-30 to the rebels in Melbourne on Sunday.

After beating Hurricane 26-22 on Friday night, the force was hoping to reach the final with the Australian team Brumbis, Waratah and the Queensland Reds.

Fourth-placed Brumbies hosted the fifth-ranked Hurricanes in Canberra on Saturday after being knocked out of the playoffs for three consecutive defeats, including a 32-22 defeat to Wooden Spoon Moana Pacific.

“It simply came to our notice then. We were probably out-of-play, maybe out-of-the-way, ”said Brumbis captain Alan Alalatoa.

“We just need to restructure.”

The defeat of Brumbis ruined a predicted showdown with Waratah in the national capital that would ensure at least one Australian team in the semifinals.

The sixth-ranked Waratara will instead travel to Hamilton on Saturday to face the third-ranked Chiefs.

“I cannot lie. We had sights and the potential was taking us to Canberra, ”Coleman said.

“Even as a coaching group, we have prepared in such a way that we are going to play in Canberra with our preview.

“So it was a waste of six hours. We will not do it again. “

Coleman is coming to the finals as a whole new competition and maintains that his team can snatch the title after a year of unbeaten campaign.

“We like to be underdogs,” he said.

“Throughout our season, at the beginning of the year we were 101 (dollars out) so we are going to be an underdog against a good football team.

“We are going to play the chiefs there and give our best.

“We have to go there and win three. Start with the first one. ”

Looking forward to Perez’s season against Hurricanes two weeks ago with a ligament injury.

But Coleman said Tahs’s most destructive back could be an amazing starter against the Chiefs.

The Waratahs were confronted at Ijaya Perez.

Ijaya Perez. (Photo by Mark Metcalfe / Getty Images)

“We’re going to give him a crack,” the coach said.

“For example, we don’t know if he will play but we will push him this week. It’s a sudden death, we have no reason to save him.

“But he must be able to work. It will be a race against the clock but we will give it to him as long as we can. “

Coleman said Johnson-Holmes had an outside chance to come back after a knee injury, but was only rated 50-50 after hooker Dave Porekie licked against the Blues.

The Seventh-ranked Reds will face second-placed Crusaders in the first quarter-final on Friday night in Christchurch.


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