Fisher tipping good things for Brumbies
July 27, 2014
Laurie Fisher will not enjoy a fairytale finish with the Brumbies © Getty Images
Departing coaching director Laurie Fisher is convinced the Brumbies are close to ending their decade-long Super Rugby title drought despite falling one win short of back-to-back grand final appearances.
Fisher lamented the Brumbies' inability to convert a wealth of possession, territory and pressure into victory in Saturday night's 26-8 semi-final loss to the New South Wales Waratahs at Allianz Stadium.
"We had our chances. We had plenty of presence down their end, but we just weren't able to do it," Fisher said in his final post-match analysis before joining Gloucester next week as their head coach in the English premiership.
Skipper and former Wallabies captain Ben Mowen is also moving on, along with several other players, but Fisher believes the Brumbies remain on track to complete a remarkable resurrection from the club's worst-ever campaign in 2011 with a first championship since 2004.
Waratahs 28-6 Brumbies (Australia only)
The revival began under South Africa's World Cup-winning mentor Jake White, who guided the Brumbies to the 2012 play-offs and grand final last year, and will continue under head coach Stephen Larkham next season.
"We've got a style of play that will continue to evolve," Fisher said. "You just roll up the sleeves and keep working. We'll look at tonight, look at the whole season, find some lessons. I know there's a quality group of players and a quality group of coaches and staff who are still here, so I'd expect the team and the organisation to prosper."
Mowen will head to Montpellier shattered not to have won the title.
"You can't have it all, even if you'd like to at times," he said. "It's a little bit tough to take at the moment, to be honest. I'm just really disappointed, I really feel like this side deserves some sort of finality, a championship, to this period and that's still there for them next year. I just really felt that the work that we'd done developing the game, the development each of the players had, that it would end there and I couldn't see it not ending there, to be honest. But we've said all along that deserving it and making those things happen are two different things and the Waratahs came out and made it happen."
Despite his dejection, Mowen also believes the two-time Super champions are on the cusp of another special era.
"As long as this side is together - and next year the majority of the group is much the same - as long as they get some sort of reward for the work they've done, I'd be very happy to see that," he said. "I almost want to ring Laurie and say: 'Mate, don't go over, we'll go to pre-season next week and get stuck back into it'. But that's our time done. I've loved every minute of it. Loved showing up to training, loved the tough days, loved the wins, the tough losses, the rollercoaster that it's been."