The West

Force win their fourth and look for back-up
Junior Rasolea. Pic: Getty Images

Western Force will look overseas to fill the holes left by long-term injuries to key forwards Hugh McMeniman and Chris Alcock.

They cannot afford another injury and coach Michael Foley needs at least one forward urgently.

Second-rower Sam Wykes, who played part of the landmark 32-29 win over Queensland with a damaged hip and ribs, should be fit to play the Waratahs at nib Stadium on Saturday night but centre Junior Rasolea is out after breaking his right arm.

The win put the club firmly into finals contention for the first time since foundation.

If the Force beat the Waratahs at nib Stadium on Saturday night and the Reds beat the Brumbies in Brisbane, the Force could go top of the Australian table.

The record fourth consecutive victory came when full-back Jayden Hayward crossed for a try with a minute left and Reds fly-half Quade Cooper missed an after-the-siren drop goal.

It was reward for a patient, efficient and tough game with two of their tries - by Ben McCalman and Hayward - coming after 16 phases. Former Reds winger Luke Morahan scored the third, fly-half Sias Ebersohn added 15 points and Hayward converted his own try.

But Foley did not believe his side played their best rugby and said they had to step up for the Waratahs.

"I thought we showed a lot of character. I didn't think we played our best footy," he said.

"There were a few elements of our game that were a bit rusty.

"We didn't get it all right but we fought to get the result.

"There are two or three things that we need to do better."

Force will use the like-for-like recruitment rule to fill the gaps left by McMeniman and Alcock.

"We'll look to strengthen our depth," Foley said. "There are not an enormous number of possibilities inside Australia but there are possibilities just outside our shores that might be available.

"We've got a good solid list of names.

"We're just looking through that information to make the best decision. There's nothing firm yet."

Meanwhile, Foley will monitor Justin Turner when he plays his first game for local club Associates on Saturday after third- choice scrum-half Ryan Louwrens ruptured a cruciate ligament in his left knee at training.

Turner, who missed the start of the season with a broken finger, made 10 appearances for the Force in four injury-hit years and began training with the Force again in pre-season.

"If he's ready he will be the third No.9," Foley said.

The West Australian

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