Brumbies coach Dan McKellar is pleased with the response from his players after their 'disappointing' performance in last week's win over the Waratahs.
When you reach the top of Super Rugby AU, you become your own toughest critics.
Just ask Brumbies coach Dan McKellar, who admitted he was 'disappointed' by their performance during last week's 24-22 win over the Waratahs.
The defending champions hung on for victory despite finishing the game with 13 players, with an 83rd-minute Will Harrison conversion to send the game into 'Super Try' fading away to the left.
With Saturday's top-of-the-table clash with the Reds at Suncorp Stadium looming as a deciding game towards who hosts the Grand Final, McKellar was happy with their approach after Friday's underwhelming performance.
“It’s been superb, they have trained really well. We’re just looking forward to Saturday night,” McKellar told the media.
“The reality is that it’s tough to be on every week and we weren’t at our levels or standards last Friday night for one reason or another but that won’t be the case on Saturday.
“I noticed a response immediately after Friday night, it was like singing the team song after a loss.
“That’s no disrespect to the Tahs, they played well but we were just disappointed in our performance.
“The review was driven by the players and they were well aware of what was coming. We know we have to be better this week and we have a good intensity about how we’ve trained and prepared so far.
“Our game is built on effort, intent and physicality. We weren’t well off the pace, but at this level, if you are five or ten percent off, you get hurt.”
The Brumbies will be boosted by the return of captain Allan Alaalatoa, who has missed the last three games after receiving a red card for a high tackle on Pone Fa'amausili.
The suspension left the 27-year-old 'shattered' according to McKellar, who was confident he would make up for it on Saturday.
“He was shattered,” he added.
“He really took that suspension to heart and thought that he let people down which he certainly didn’t. It was just an accidental high shot at speed, two big guys going at each other.
“He’s certainly keen to get back out there, lead the side through his actions and that’s what he’s all about. He’s not someone that likes to talk too much, he leads from the front.”
McKellar was also pleased flanker Tom Cusack avoided suspension after his red card.
"Common sense prevailed, it's good," he remarked.
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It’s going to be a top-of-the-table clash when the Reds take on the Brumbies at Suncorp Stadium on Saturday night, kicking off at 7.45pm AEST, catch all the action LIVE on Stan Sports and simulcast on 9Gem, click here to purchase tickets.