Advertisement

Brumbies ready to beat the Blues in Super Rugby semi-finals

ACT Brumbies captain Allan Alaalatoa is confident the Australian team can pull off an upset win at the Auckland Blues in Friday's Super Rugby semi-final (Martin KEEP)
ACT Brumbies captain Allan Alaalatoa is confident the Australian team can pull off an upset win at the Auckland Blues in Friday's Super Rugby semi-final (Martin KEEP)

ACT Brumbies captain Allan Alaalatoa says his team must learn from their previous Super Rugby defeats in New Zealand to succeed in Friday's crunch semi-final at the Auckland Blues.

The Brumbies have lost away to New Zealand teams in the semis for the previous two years -- beaten 19-6 at the Chiefs in Hamilton last year after going down 20-19 at the Blues in 2022.

Alaalatoa said Monday the Brumbies must heed the harsh lessons from those defeats as they hunt for a place in the Super Rugby final, where they will face either the Wellington Hurricanes or Waikato Chiefs, who play on Saturday.

"Last year and the year before were probably the first time the boys have been over to New Zealand, playing in the finals and experiencing what it's like to play at Eden Park," he told reporters.

"Having the experience of playing semi-finals over there is going to be massive for us."

Alaalatoa is confident the Brumbies can be the first Australian team to win a Super Rugby knock-out game on New Zealand soil.

However, he knows the visitors face an uphill task at Auckland's Eden Park where they were hammered 46-7 by the Blues in April, conceding seven tries.

The Brumbies were out-muscled in Auckland, but bounced back by winning all seven games since.

"That was a tough lesson," Alaalatoa said.

"So we know that's coming, but we also know more importantly what we're going to bring."

Brumbies full-back Tom Wright said the Australian team heads to New Zealand ready to make amends.

"The challenge is always going up against the Kiwi sides, we are under no illusions. They have set the benchmark in this competition for a long time," he said.

"We believe in ourselves, that we are good enough to do it."

Wright added that the visitors can't let the Blues start strong, as they did in the April shellacking when the Brumbies found themselves 24-0 down at half-time.

"We need to learn from that game. If they want to play big and physical, we need to counteract that," he said.

ryj/djw/sco