'We didn't buckle there': Tahs take away positives from tight loss to Brumbies
The NSW Waratahs are continuing to take steps forward despite consecutive Super Rugby Pacific losses, according to captain Jake Gordon.
The Tahs fell 27-20 against the Brumbies on Saturday night but took it right up to the talented side, controlling large parts of the game as they looked to overturn an 18-point deficit from early in the second half.
That fighting spirit impressed Gordon, recalling how his side had been flogged 61-10 in Canberra by the Brumbies early in last year’s winless season.
“It was 10-0 10 minutes into the game. If you reflect on last year, probably we would have rolled over and it could have been a 40-10 finish,” he said.
“I’m really proud of how the boys are sticking in and being tough. There’s definitely more confidence, but most of all we’re working hard for one another.
“We’ve tried to pride ourselves on being tough this year and we’re definitely doing that.”
Coach Darren Coleman said he was proud of his side’s ability to fight, but felt extra polish was needed to match it with the league’s best.
“The boys just have a crack,” he said.
“How many times we turn the Brumbies away off our own tryline, I think they had five or six more shots at our line and we didn’t buckle there.
“We definitely know we’ve got to put a bit more polish on some things.
“Their set-piece and their high-kicking game was better than ours, they got some penalties out of that as well.
“Effectively, the only way they entered our D-zone was through penalty.
“We played some good footy, we ran around and I reckon we made more linebreaks than them.
“When it all clicks and we get a dry night and we’re a little bit more polished as a team, we’ll be all right.”
The Tahs head back to Leichhardt Oval where they’ll start favourites against the Western Force next Sunday, looking to square the ledger at 2-2.
They will assess Angus Bell’s leg after the impressive forward prop came from the field with a suspected thigh injury.
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