The Rebels have their finals hopes exactly where they want them heading into a pivotal clash with the Brumbies, backrower Colby Fainga’a says.
Friday’s match will help decide the Australian conference winner, who will potentially be the country’s only Super Rugby finalist, and Fainga’a said they were pleased to have control over their own fate.
“It’s extremely important,” he said.
“We’re in a good position where we’ve got our own destiny in our own hands so it’s a good spot to be in and to have tough games coming up.
“If you want to be the best in the comp you’ve got to play the best.”
Fainga’a said there wasn’t a feeling that this match would end of their season if it turned out in a loss.
“There’s a still a few games to go,” he said.
“I don’t think this is the be all, end all for the squad if we don’t win this game but I know we’ve put a lot of effort into this weekend.
“Everyone's done a lot of review and preview on these guys and what we’ve done well over the past few games, what we need to work on.
“We’re not putting all our eggs into the basket for this weekend, there’s still quite a few games to go in this season.”
As for his own personal battle in the back row, Fainga’a said the team wouldn’t be consumed by the threat of David Pocock.
We pride ourselves a lot on our breakdown as well so we know going into this weekend we know he’s there but I don’t think we’re going to change a whole lot,” he said.
“I think we’ve recognised he’s in the team, he’s obviously a world class player but we also need to stick to what we do well.”
The Rebels look likely to welcome some players back from injury for the clash, including gun back Mike Harris, who has missed eight weeks with a quad injury.
Fainga’a missed seven weeks with an elbow injury and said the Rebels’ list was being boosted at the right time.
“We’ve had quite an unlucky run throughout the start of the season,” he said.
“It’s good that at the back end of the season that’ where everyone's trying to feed back into the team.
“It’s a pretty good spot to have (had) such an inconsistent team for the first half of the season (with) guys going in, guys coming out, getting injured.
“(It was) a disrupted start to the season and then to get a bit of consistency towards the back end of the season that's where you want to be peaking.”
The Rebels host the Brumbies on Friday night, kicking off at 7:40pm AEST.