Fri 21 Jun 2019 | 02:30

Sharks 'come with strong set-piece'

Brumbies Christian Lealiifano captain chats about Sharks' set-piece
Fri 21 Jun 2019 | 02:30
Sharks 'come with strong set-piece'
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IN THE SPOTLIGHT: Sharks’ set-piece and their quality backline are just a few things that Brumbies have thoroughly examined before the quarterfinal showdown.

Brumbies skipper Christian Lealiifano says they’ll take that mantra and “quiet confidence” into their home Super Rugby quarter-final against the Sharks on Saturday.

The Brumbies have won eight of their past nine games, seven in a row at Canberra Stadium, and are gunning for a single-season record seventh straight victory.

Those numbers are a far cry from the Brumbies start to the season when they lost five of their first seven games, before storming home to clinch the Australian conference.

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Lealiifano said the switch flicked when they began focusing on preparation instead of results, and he emphasised nothing needed to change for finals.

“It’s about trusting our game and what we’ve been doing and we took a real shift in focusing on our preparation and we’ve seen that payoff,” Lealiifano said.

“It’s about keeping our standards super high and not getting ahead of ourselves and it’s been working really well.

“We’re keeping it normal this week and training hard and making sure we’re doing the right things to put ourselves in a position to play well.

“We haven’t had to talk too much about [keeping things normal] and that’s the quiet confidence in the group and trusting what we’re doing.”

The Brumbies have a golden opportunity to break a 15-year title drought thanks to a favourable finals draw and a full-strength squad.

Lealiifano will retire from Super Rugby this season after 12 years at the Brumbies and said the current group had the opportunity to do something special.

“I was thinking earlier in the week just how special this group is, purely the connections we’ve made and the way we enjoy being around each other,” Lealiifano said.

“The way we work hard for each other as well is something I feel is probably a little bit different to previous years and that’s why I feel we can do some special things.

“You feel confident in your years here but when you give yourself a chance [at winning the title] there’s always that [extra] confidence.”

READ: PREVIEW: SUPER RUGBY QUARTERFINALS

The Brumbies haven’t faced the Sharks this season but Lealiifano said their best rugby is good enough to beat any team in the competition.

“They’re a quality team, they play big and come with a strong set-piece then they’ve got some really fast outside backs, similar to what we’ve had the last few weeks,” Lealiifano said.

“They’ll be dangerous and if we’re not on our game they’ll hurt us.

“But our focus is on putting our best performance out there and seeing what happens. Yeah, I think our best is good enough.”

Source: AAP

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Sharks 'come With Strong Set-piece' | Rugby365