The West

Force face dilemma after first win
Western Force players celebrate their win over the NSW Waratahs. Pic: Getty Images

One win does not make a team title contenders and coach Richard Graham has brought Western Force firmly back to earth after they upset the NSW Waratahs 21-20.

Graham faces some difficult decisions as he plans for an away double against the Rebels, who lost 33-26 at home to the Cheetahs yesterday.

Does he stick with the rookies for Friday's match in Melbourne or does he return to the big names like wingers Napolioni Nalaga and Nick Cummins, full-back Cameron Shepherd, centre Patrick Dellit and second-rower Toby Lynn who are all coming back from injury?

Cummins and Lynn flew to Sydney yesterday and Nalaga, Shepherd and Dellit will be assessed today. No.8 Ben McCalman has still not recovered from nerve damage to his left arm and won't be ready.

Fill-in full-back David Harvey, just days after signing as the Force's latest playmaker, was the unlikely hero on Saturday with 16 points. While some of his kicking left a bit to be desired and he lacked pace at time, he was solid.

Another first-time starter, Sam Wara, had a memorable night with the match-winning try, while NRL recruit Will Tupou showed why he is so highly rated by Graham.

"We let them enjoy the win but everybody was back on deck 8am Sunday. The feet are firmly back on the ground, nobody got too carried away and we start again," Graham said. "That was an important win for us as a group. It reinforced what we have been doing. We showed character commitment and spirit, scrapped for 80 minutes and it will give the group confidence."

Pocock blitzed the Tahs at the breakdown as the Force attacked in numbers and Nathan Sharpe was at his best in the line-out.

Handling may have improved but there were still too many times when the side ground its way towards the line in multiple phases only to lose the ball or give away a penalty at the crucial moment.

The injury-ravaged Force may have stunned the Tahs in the upset win of the season but the officials almost contrived to beat the Force.

They allowed NSW winger Tom Kingston's try after the ball had been knocked on by scrum-half Sarel Pretorius and awarded a penalty against Pocock after he had produced the best breakdown clean out of the year.

Waratahs coach Michael Foley said his side had to address an attitude problem.

He accused his players of being lazy and ill-disciplined.

The home crowd was also less than impressed, booing the Tahs after their poor performance.

"Until we address some of the things that happened, it would be remiss to look forward beyond that," Foley said.

"We definitely need to change. It starts probably particularly with the attitude."

The West Australian

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