Warriors to Waratahs; Pieretto's entry into the Waratahs

Thu, May 16, 2024, 5:31 AM
by Dan Slade
Enrique Pieretto at his first week of training with the Waratahs in Daceyville.
Enrique Pieretto at his first week of training with the Waratahs in Daceyville.

After enduring the brutal wet and wild conditions of last week's match against the ACT Brumbies, the Waratahs have now turned to focus on reconstructing and remodelling ahead of Saturday's upcoming clash against the Western Force.

Following the damming loss of experienced props Hayden Thompson-Stringer and Harry Johnson-Holmes, the number of NSW Waratahs players unavailable for selection for the remainder of the season has risen to 13, with a further three players pending return (dates not confirmed).

In response, NSW Head Coach Darren Coleman and the selection committee have looked abroad to bring new strength to the squad, aiming to inject fresh blood into the forward pack.

The Waratahs have locked in the loan of Enrique Pieretto (who is on contract with the Glasgow Warriors) on a week-to-week basis. Pieretto is an impressive 29-year-old tighthead prop, bringing substantial strength, agility, and experience to the side. Pieretto weighs 122kg and is 1.86 metres tall. Hailing from Cordoba, Argentina, Pieretto is set to bolster the team's diminished front-row stocks with his powerful presence and seasoned skills.

Touching down in a rain-drenched Sydney on Saturday morning with a week until his first clash, Pieretto spoke of the personal decision that brought him to the Waratahs, emphasising the opportunity to come over and make an on-field statement contributing to the team's efforts.

Regardless of the physical distance between Sydney and Glasgow, Pieretto spoke of his personal interest in the Waratahs and Super Rugby; "of course, I follow Super Rugby."

Presser: Enrique Pieretto on arrival at the Waratahs

Prior to playing in Glasgow, Pieretto played with the Jaguares from 2016-2019. Perhaps Pieretto's most iconic game of his career was his appearance in the 2019 Super Rugby Final against the Crusaders. Despite a narrow defeat, he showcased his raw talent and rich experience in the tournament.

Coleman and his family invited Pieretto to lunch over the wet weekend to get to know each other and discuss the opportunities that present themselves to both parties as part of the loan.

Pieretto spoke fondly of the culture that the Waratahs foster, speaking of their substantial effort to "[make] me feel welcome here from the start." The warm reception was pivotal as Pieretto settled into the new area over the weekend and adjusted to the difference in time zones, preparing to meet and play with his new teammates.

Pieretto expressed his excitement for his new environment, calling it an "amazing place" and noting the camaraderie among the "good boys" on the team.

Pieretto marked an important step in his integration into the squad as he participated in his first training session on Tuesday.

"First training today, so happy, happy to be here," he said, indicating his enthusiastic and upbeat outlook as he adapted to the Waratahs' training regimen. The eager attitude depicted that Pieretto is ready to bring his wealth of experience and skills to the team, and his desire to contribute to the Waratahs for the remainder of the season.

Speaking to the media following the training session, Pieretto spoke of the challenges that lie ahead of him however seemed ready to embrace them. He acknowledged the team's current standing, stating; "We know where we are, and we are working to get higher up on the table.”

Looking ahead to the upcoming match, Pieretto noted; "We are working on getting ready for the weekend, it’s a big game so good to go."

This eagerness to kick-off Pieretto’s Australian campaign indicates that he is prepared to apply his seasoned know-how and talents to the squad, aiding in their endeavours for the remainder of the season.

Match Details:

Super Rugby Pacific - Round 13: NSW Waratahs v Western Force.

Saturday May 18 at HBF Park.

Kick-off 7:35pm AEST.

The match will be broadcast live and ad-free and Stan Sport.


By Dan Slade


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