Tahs dish out bye week truth bombs

Beth Newman Profile
by Beth Newman

The Waratahs will be offering up some home truths as they make the most of their bye week, coming off a loss to the Brumbies.

NSW scrumhalf Nick Phipps said the side needed to be honest as they prepare for a round four clash against the Highlanders in 10 days’ time.

“You're often a better mate if you're saying something that's’ pretty hard to say to someone.

“Everyone in the squad has little areas that we have to work on and that sort of collective buy in is something we’re going to be looking forward to after the bye.

Phipps said the side’s new generation of leaders needed to take more responsibility.

“I thought on the weekend we had a few signs there that we’re a young team, which probably isn’t good enough for the people we’ve got in our squad, “he said.

“(We had) a few sort of brain snaps out there, some silly penalties (and) some of the defence wasn't as solid as it needed to be through the middle.”

The Waratahs have walked a fine line with that physical edge in the opening two weeks, with giving away 18 in their opening clash against the Reds, and coughing up two yellow cards in the opening half hour against the Brumbies.

Phipps put the penalties down to a case of excess enthusiasm but said the Waratahs needed to make better decisions in the heat of battle.

“(When) we’ve got them trapped down their end, there’s no need to give away a silly penalty, we don't need a miracle pilfer or miracle hit over the line,” he said.

“We’ve just got to make sure we stick to our system and make sure we keep working together as opposed to trying to do a miracle play which you think is good for the team but in the end it just really punishes you.”

NSW attack coach Chris Malone echoed Phipps’ comments, saying the side simply couldn’t afford to be gifting opponents opportunities.

“The really disappointing thing was we forced a lot of pressure and then we let it off,” he said.

“By that I mean we’d go eight or nine phases  where we were really hard on the attack defensively and then we’d give away a penalty or someone would miss a one-on-one tackle,” he said.

“People are eager but with that you've got to have accuracy and you can’t afford to be in the first four minutes of the game wearing hit after hit after hit in terms of referee's perception but also being on your own try line.

“Good teams if you give them enough of those chances they’ll put you away.”

Join the discussion