Tidier Tahs expected for round two

Beth Newman Profile
by Beth Newman

NSW Waratahs coach Daryl Gibson says his team has some cleaning up to do ahead of its second round hit-out against the Brumbies.

While the Waratahs had a comfortable win over arch rivals the Reds on Saturday night, most of their advantage came in the first half hour of the game.

The two sides played out an even second half on the scoreboard and Gibson said they would need to shake off some round one rust despite the win.

“I think the first 30 minutes was  really good, it epitomised the style of play we want to aim for this season,” he said.

“After that I thought we got a little bit messy, particularly in the second half where we failed to put sustained pressure on the Reds and we ended up making a great deal of tackles.”

Gibson praised flyhalf Kurtley Beale for his outstanding efforts in the match,particularly a try-saving tackle on monster Reds winger Chris Feauai-Sautia.

“His effort in defence that’s kind of the identity that Michael (captain Michael Hooper)has set for the team around that desperation and commitment that we want,” he said.

NSW move from one Aussie derby to another, travelling to Canberra to face the Brumbies next Friday night.

The Brumbies pose an altogether different challenge to the Reds, with a strong set piece and an newly electric attacking game that was shown off in their 52-10 win over the Hurricanes on Friday night.

Hooper said his team’s focus would be on physically recovering ahead of another gruelling game.

“We’ve got a lot  to dissect from the Brumbies - strong set  piece, they’ve got good carriers, good clinical game and some new tricks up their sleeve.”

Hooper said the fierce competition for spots would help fuel their performances in the opening weeks.

“We’re a confident team, a confident squad we have to be, we’ve got guys chomping that the bit to get a start,” he said.

“There are guys in the changerooms in suits to get into a blue jersey and that’s what we need.”