Adam Ashley-Cooper back for NSW Waratahs

Wallabies vice-captain Adam Ashley-Cooper will make his long-awaited return for the NSW Waratahs in Saturday’s Super Rugby clash with the Stormers at Allianz Stadium.

Ashley-Cooper has been sidelined for almost two months with a rare knee injury but has finally been deemed fit and will return via the bench.

Coach Michael Cheika stuck with an unchanged starting side, with Wallabies hooker Tatafu Polota-Nau making his return on the bench after being sidelined by a head knock.

Defence coach Nathan Grey is tipping a bruising battle with the Stormers and has warned the Waratahs to be on guard against the exuberance of the Cape Town outfit.

“They’ve got a lot of young guys who are trying to play their way and trying to play really well at this level,” he said.

“That’s exciting for them, but it’s also dangerous for us … they back themselves to play from anywhere on the field.

“They’ve got that young, ‘let’s have a crack’ attitude, which is going to provide opportunities if we’re lazy.”

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