The Wales centre has been named on the bench for the Australian franchise's first game of Super Rugby Pacific

Jamie Roberts set to make Waratahs debut

Jamie Roberts is set to make his NSW Waratahs debut from the bench on Friday in the Super Rugby Pacific match against Fijian Drua.

The Wales international signed for the Australian franchise in January after moving with his family to Australia. He and partner Nicole, who is from Sydney, are expecting their second child in March, so he decided to leave the Dragons to head Down Under at the start of the year.

On leaving the Dragons, he said: “Although it’ll be difficult leaving, I do so with many fond memories.

“As well as enjoying wearing the jersey and playing, I’ve taken great satisfaction in supporting and witnessing the growth and development of younger players in the squad, many of whom are destined for success in the game.

“It’s been great fun playing back at Rodney Parade, where my parents took me as a young lad growing up to watch the Black and Ambers.”

Now he is set to play for the Waratahs in what is the opening game of this year’s Super Rugby season after Moana Pasifika v Blues had to be called off due to Covid cases in the Pasifika team.

Fijian Drua and Moana Pasifika are new additions to the competition alongside the Australian and New Zealand franchises – check out our Super Rugby Pacific team guide.

Roberts has been selected on the bench as No 23 in a Waratahs side that will be looking to bounce back from a difficult 2021. He tweeted: “Brilliant first couple of weeks out in Sydney with the @NSWWaratahs lads. Excited for the opening round of Super Rugby Pacific β€˜22 under the lights Friday night.”

If you want to see Roberts make his Waratahs debut, find out how to watch Super Rugby Pacific.

As well as playing for Dragons, Roberts has had spells at Premiership clubs Bath and Harlequins. In addition, he has competed for Cardiff, Stormers and Racing 92, so Australia is the fifth country he has played rugby in domestically after Wales, France, England and South Africa.

Roberts has played 94 times for Wales, his last Test in 2017 against New Zealand, and he has also made three Test appearances for the British & Irish Lions.

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