Australia vs England: Taniela Tupou challenged to back-up trash talk on the pitch after ‘smash’ claim

·1-min read
 (Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

Australia talisman Taniela Tupou has been told it is time to put up or shut up ahead of Saturday’s Second Test against England in Brisbane.

Prop Tupou missed the final month of Super Rugby with the Reds and last weekend’s opening 30-28 win for the Wallabies in Perth with a calf injury.

The 26-year-old, who weighs in at about 21st, has been quick to single out Ellis Genge in the pre-match build-up, with the pair set to pack down against each other.

Tupou said he was aiming to “smash” Genge and was expecting the same in return in their much anticipated head-to-head.

Richard Cockerill, England’s forwards’ coach, will have a ringside seat at Suncorp Stadium, and has warned Tupou he had better be able to back up his words.

Cockerill said: “Tupou has not played for a little while, so he’d better turn up and perform if he is going to start challenging Ellis before the game. Ellis will get on with his game.

“His scrummaging is very consistent, he always shows good pictures and I’m looking forward to that battle — two big ball-carriers, two big, physical men, who are going to get at it. That’s what sells tickets, isn’t it?

“I am sure they are saying the same as us. When Gengey gets the ball, they are going to want to whack him. When Tupou gets the ball, we are going to want to whack him.”

England need a win to keep the series alive after misfiring last weekend and Cockerill is confident they are up to the job.

“We are coming here to win,” he said. “There’s no other result that we need.”

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