Skipper Dave Dennis says the NSW Waratahs need no reminding that they’ve achieved absolutely nothing yet as an elusive Super Rugby crown sits tantalisingly close to the competition’s perennial under-achievers.
But that won’t stop meticulous coach Michael Cheika from ramming home the fact.
The second-placed Waratahs are hot favourites to all but clinch Australian conference honours with victory over the injury-ravaged Brumbies at ANZ Stadium on Saturday night.
Dennis, though, is taking nothing for granted – and nor would long-suffering fans who have endured too many false dawns from the Waratahs before.
“We have had similar opportunities in the past too,” Dennis said after Friday’s captain’s run.
“Cheik forever reminds us that we still haven’t achieved anything yet, which is right too.
“We have played some good games of rugby but, overall, we haven’t achieved a lot.
“I’ll stress to the boys there is still a lot ahead of us to achieve.
“Our mission at the start of the year was to achieve top two and we are on track for that, but we still need to win the next couple of games.
“It’s a really good challenge this week to push ahead in the Aussie conference and then see where we are at after that.”
With the Waratahs chasing a club-record-equalling fifth straight win and within sight of a first minor premiership, Dennis understands expectations are high.
“It’s human nature. Our fans are starting to watch a bit more and turn up more and people are probably expecting a bit more than what we produced earlier in the year,” he said.
“It’s always going to be there … I don’t think we will get too caught up in that side, as a playing group.”
The Brumbies, who must win to retain control of their own finals destiny, are without a stack of Wallabies.
But that also means little to the Waratahs.
“You look at the history of the Brumbies, in the last couple of games, we haven’t done too well,” Dennis said.
“It’s a big game for us; it’s a big challenge.
“When you break it down, they have a couple of changes but, overall, they’re still a strong outfit.
“They’ll play the Brumbies-style of rugby, which has been successful for them over the last couple of years. It’s a pressure-orientated game.
“We are not going to be going out there assuming things are going to happen for us.”