Reds pack dominating one scrum, ruck at a time

Super Rugby
by Sam Phillips

Brandon Paenga-Amosa and the Reds forward pack have a clear directive from coach Brad Thorn - dominate each scrum and every ruck, one by one.

The Reds hooker is carved from the tough stuff Thorn craves.

He has proved a pivotal part of the team's set piece play and has the physicality in both attack and defence to make an impact, which is exactly what Thorn has asked of his pack prior to their two wins so far this season.

"We just knew that in order to win the game and to be dominant we had to win all the little battles," Paenga-Amosa said from Buenos-Aires.

"On numerous occasions we actually did, which was a big aspect to us winning.Paenga-Amosa and the Reds look to be on the up. Photo: RUGBY.com.au/Stuart Walmsley"The spirits are up, it's much better going on a long plane trip and jumping on tour with a win under our belt - two wins under our belt.

"It makes the trip so much more enjoyable."

The 22-year-old has been a bolt from the blue for the Reds.

Born in Auckland before his family moved to Sydney when he was four, Paenga-Amosa was in and out of Waratahs development teams through his time at Endeavour Sports High School, taking his talents to Southern Districts in Sydney's Shute Shield after school.

It was there that he played his way into a spot with the Greater Sydney Rams in 2016 before starring for the NSW Country Eagles last year.

His breakout season was enough for the Rebels to invite him south but that all changed when Thorn picked up the phone.

He hopped straight in the car, headed for the Hume Highway and hasn't looked back.Paenga-Amosa's rise has been meteoric. Photo: Getty Images"I went down to the Rebels for two months and then Brad Thorn gave me a call and said he wanted me up in Brisbane,:

"As soon as I spoke to Brad I hopped in the car and drove straight to Brisbane.

"I knew it wasn't going to be easy to come up here and train hard but I knew I just had to do my best and push myself.

"Having great hookers like Alex Mafi and Andrew Ready around me helped to push me."

Now that Paenga-Amosa and the Reds have two home wins to their name, their next challenge is finding success on the road.


The Jaguares showed the Waratahs what they can do should the Reds take them lightly and Queensland are expecting another physical clash up front.

"I think it's a matter of just sticking and focusing on what we know," Paenga-Amosa said.

"We don't want to change things up - we want to execute our plays at set piece and stick to our systems.

"If we stick to those things and don't try and make it too complicated, it should work out for us in the end and we can get a victory from that."

The Reds face the Jaguares in Buenos Aires on Sunday morning, kicking off at 8:40am AEDT, broadcast LIVE on FOX SPORTS.