It was the story of our season
With pressure mounting for Michael Foley to be replaced as Waratahs coach, the embattled team is struggling with injuries ahead of their final match of the season.
With a determined Reds team waiting in Brisbane this week, the Waratahs would have hoped for a smoother ride than the one which started their build-up on Monday.
Powerful No.8 Wycliff Palu has joined the ever-growing injury list.
He underwent scans on his left shoulder, after sustaining an injury in the 15-=19 loss to the Brumbies at the weekend.
Scans have ruled out a fracture or any significant soft tissue damage and his progress will continue to be monitored by the medical team.
Prop Sekope Kepu suffered a left calf strain in training last week and while his recovery is progressing, remains doubtful and will undergo further testing with the Waratahs medical team before a final call is made.
A decision on both players' availability for selection this weekend will be made later this week.
A number of other players will also not participate fully in training this week and are also unlikely to play any part in the match - Rocky Elsom (shoulder), Dan Vickerman (shoulder/leg), Damien Fitzpatrick (knee) and Pat McCutcheon (ankle).
The Waratahs suffered another agonising defeat, when they went down to the Brumbies - adding to growing clamour for Foley to get the boot.
However, the coach remained steadfast and suggested the side produced an "improved" performance from their last outing - a 21-point hammering at the hands of the Hurricanes.
"That was a much stronger performance than our last outing and I'd like to think that's a step towards an even better performance next week," said Foley after the match.
Their failure to capitalise and errors at crucial stages in the second half opened the door for the Australian Conference leaders, the Brumbies, to secure the win that will almost certainly see them progress to the Super Rugby finals.
Although the Waratahs were, for the eighth time this season, forced to settle for a losing bonus point, the side displayed some encouraging signs ahead of next week's final match against the Reds in Brisbane, providing they can tighten up in crucial areas.
"In the first half we played some really solid footy but in the second half we let them back in the game," admitted disappointed captain Benn Robinson, who would have been hoping for a better result in his 100th game for NSW.
"It's always disappointing to lose like we did but it was the story of our season in the second half. We give up too many easy penalties and let teams back in."
Another area of the game that Foley says the team will need to work on is the restarts.
"Once you score points, the opposition kicks the ball back into your half and securing that possession is critical.
"If you don't, obviously they get possession and they are in your half. That swings the momentum in the game. That happened to us two or three times tonight and when you're playing the best side in Australia, the margins are going to be very fine. You need to win those little margins."