Sink or swim time for Rebels

Wed, 12 Feb 2014 16:20
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Rebels coach Tony McGahan is wary that the franchise will likely lose a portion of their home supporters if they are unable to produce the goods this season.

Melbourne Rebels coach Tony McGahan is wary that the franchise will likely lose a portion of their home supporters if they are unable to produce the goods this season.

The Rebels have gradually improved in their three seasons of Super Rugby – moving up from 15th in their debut season to 13th in 2012 and 12th last year – but have some way to go towards inspiring Victoria fans to believe that they can make a run at the play-offs.

The perennial success and proven popularity of Rugby League side the Melbourne Storm increase the demand for the Rebels to deliver results, or risk losing their local fan base.

Having lost Wallaby stars James O'Connor and Kurtley Beale, who for all their controversy last year were major draw cards for the clubs, wins could be even harder to come by for the Rebels this season.  

McGahan refused to sidestep the issue, saying instilling greater self-belief and plugging their leaky defence will be key to proving their worth.

"For us we really want to make sure we're consistent. Winning our home games is the No.1 priority," he told AAP.

"We know there's not a lot of time and patience out there for any code or any team for that mater.

"We have been in the competition three years and in normal circumstances we've got longer, but we understand the market we're in.

"We're under no illusions we need to get results to have a team and a style of play members can identify with. And that's in a tough market down there with the Melbourne Storm who do exceptionally well."

Scrumhalf Luke Burgess said McGahan’s influence has been apparent during the pre-season, with the team undefeated in their warm-up matches.

"He's not prepared to ask someone to do something he's not prepared to do himself," Burgess said.

"His work ethic is incredible, I've never met anyone like him in rugby. It's pretty inspirational to hear him talk about his expectations."

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FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Fri, 26 August 2016
Golden Lions v Boland 15h00 Johannesburg
Pumas v Griquas 17h10 Kimberley
Sat, 27 August 2016
New Zealand v Australia 07h35 Wellington
EP Kings v Western Province 14h00 Port Elizabeth
Sharks v Blue Bulls 16h10 Durban
Argentina v South Africa 17h40 Salta
RESULT SCORE
Sat, 20 August 2016
South Africa v Argentina 30 | 23
Golden Lions v Griquas 24 | 30
Australia v New Zealand 8 | 42
Fri, 19 August 2016
Blue Bulls v EP Kings 49 | 35
Western Province v Free State Cheetahs 25 | 32
Boland v Sharks 20 | 41
Sat, 13 August 2016
Free State Cheetahs v Blue Bulls 43 | 20
Golden Lions v Pumas 68 | 26
Fri, 12 August 2016
Sharks v Griquas 46 | 24
EP Kings v Boland 10 | 28
Sat, 06 August 2016
Boland v Free State Cheetahs 16 | 44
Hurricanes v Lions 20 | 3
Fri, 05 August 2016
Pumas v Sharks 10 | 33
Blue Bulls v Western Province 45 | 26
Sat, 30 July 2016
Lions v Highlanders 42 | 30
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MORE LOGS
Pool AU
Team P W D L Pts
Brumbies 15 10 0 5 43
Waratahs 15 8 0 7 40
Rebels 15 7 0 8 31
Reds 15 3 1 11 17
Force 15 2 0 13 13
Pool NZ
Team P W D L Pts
Hurricanes 15 11 0 4 53
Highlanders 15 11 0 4 52
Chiefs 15 11 0 4 51
Crusaders 15 11 0 4 50
Blues 15 8 1 6 39
Pool SA1
Team P W D L Pts
Stormers 15 10 1 4 51
Bulls 15 9 1 5 42
Cheetahs 15 4 0 11 21
Sunwolves 15 1 1 13 9
Pool SA2
Team P W D L Pts
Lions 14 11 0 3 52
Sharks 15 9 1 5 43
Jaguares 14 3 0 11 18
Kings 15 2 0 13 9