A strengthened Waratahs side is looking to end a long stretch of Eden Park misery in their Super Rugby Pacific quarterfinal with the Blues in Auckland on Friday.

The Waratahs have won once at the ground since the inception of Super Rugby in 1996, a 27-22 win in 2009.

Returning to their side after their loss to Moana Pasifika last weekend are, lock Jed Holloway, prop Dave Porecki, and No.8 Langi Gleeson. The highly promising Harrison Goddard takes the place of captain Jake Gordon at halfback who has a concussion. Second five-eighths Lalakai Foketi returns while loose forward Lachie Swinton is retained after returning from a six-week suspension, reduced from seven weeks, at the weekend.

Waratahs coach Darren Coleman said: "After disappointing and letting down our home town supporters in the last regular season game of the year at home on Saturday, we have re-set and are excited by the challenge to redeem ourselves.

"We understand the enormity of the opposition on their home patch, but it's something we look forward to ripping into.

"We've had a good short week of prep and will play like a team with nothing to lose."

Swinton is a controversial replacement and was told by Coleman that he was hurting the team with his disciplinary record, and the side was a better one when he was in it.



Assistant coach Pauli Taumoepeau said having Swinton back was important, and he had worked hard during his break.

Swinton was suspended for a late charge on Force five-eighths Jack Strachan. Swinton's record is checkered. His Wallabies debut was marred by a red card for a high shot on All Blacks lock Sam Whitelock.

Taumoepeau said, "I thought he was mature with his time off.

"He wanted to get better in the other skill sets. He was doing some extra lineout stuff, always working on his defence.

"The way that he plays the game, having those weeks off would be very refreshing for his body, and we saw the combination of six weeks off on the weekend where he was able to put on some big shots.

"If you want to go into battle with someone, Lachie Swinton's a pretty awesome bloke to have next to you."

QUARTERFINAL: Blues v NSW Waratahs, Friday 9 June, 7.35pm NZT, Eden Park, Auckland.