Rod flies low
HE'S only 22, but Rod Davies has been around long enough not to get too excited this week.
The former Ipswich Grammar School student and his Queensland Reds teammates haven't been sucked into any of the hype surrounding them reaching the Super 15 rugby final.
The hotly-anticipated match is at Suncorp Stadium against the Crusaders on Saturday.
“It has been pretty low-key,” Davies said of the lead-up this week.
“We've still got the feeling we've got one more to go.
“Hopefully we can keep it on the low and do the job.”
The aim has been to stick with what has worked so well for them this season, in which the Reds finished minor premiers.
“We're a pretty confident bunch,” Davies said. “We know if we play to our ability we can match it with any team.
“It is no different this week.
“We just need to let our defence do the work and let our attack go from there.”
It was the Reds' defence which frustrated the Blues into error last weekend and resulted in the pass that Davies intercepted for Queensland's opening try.
“That's what happens,” Davies said. “We're a team that scores off our defence.
“Our counter attack is good.
“I got up in defence and in those situations you either go for them or you're made to look silly.”
However, the Crusaders are also renowned for scoring tries from its defence and counter-attacking ability.
“They're probably the number one team in the game at it,” Davies said. “We're going to have to be on our toes for sure.
“They've got (Dan) Carter at five-eighth, big centres in Sonny Bill (Williams) and (Robbie) Fruen and wingers doing their job in Zac Guildford and Sean Maitland.''
Davies will mark up against Guildford and is familiar with his opponent.
“I've played against him for (Australian) schoolboys against the Junior Kiwis, for the Crusaders a couple of times and at under-20s level as well,” Davies said.
“He's an outstanding player.
“I'll have to be on top of my game because he and Dan Carter have been working well together.”
As were Davies and Queensland five-eighth Quade Cooper in Saturday's 30-13 semi-final win.
A backline move from a lineout saw Cooper put Davies through a gap and score his second try without a hand being laid upon him.
“It is something you train for,” Davies said of the move.
“It was a good ball from Quade and everything worked well.”
While the Reds have the backs to cause any team headaches, it is in combat the Crusaders.
The set pieces were their biggest weakness against the Blues, while the Crusaders destroyed the Stormers in the scrum and, to a lesser extent, the lineout.