Reds breaking down the way to beat Brumbies

SUPER RUGBY: Reds flanker Ed Quirk believes his team will be better placed to handle the Brumbies' star back row for the competition opener in Canberra on Saturday night.

The Reds were punished at the breakdown in the same game to open the 2013 campaign, losing 24-6.

Quirk (pictured) said getting his head bashed around at training has been the ideal form of preparation.

"We've done a lot of stuff in pre-season with Stilesy (forwards coach Nick Stiles) to counteract that," he said. "Him being an ex-prop, just getting in and get our heads in some bad places. We'vedone a lot of breakdown work, a lot of contact work."

Quirk said the Reds, who were criticised for being too forward-focused in last year's opener, would look to move the ball this time.

"Last year we got caught out a bit, but as you've seen in the trials we're playing a more expansive game," he said.


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