Super Rugby 2020: Chiefs seek fast start against Waratahs

The Chiefs have been put on notice - their slow starts to matches have to be sorted out and soon.

Their Super Rugby loss to the Brumbies showed what can happen when teams get away from them early, and they face another Australian test this week that could end the same way, if things don't change.

Chiefs assistant coach Neil Barnes has laid down the law.

"It's obvious that it's something we've needed to address, because we haven't actually started well in any of our games," says Barnes. "To me, it's your individual preparation." 

And that's been the key focus during their bye week. 

They've conceded first in every game this season. Nineteen unanswered first-half points against the Brumbies was their worst effort yet and resulted in their only loss this season. 

"We still haven't put out our 'A' game yet," says Barnes. "It is early, we've only had four games and it takes a while to get into your groove." 

When the Chiefs have got going, they've been hard to stop, thanks - in part - to a star-studded backline, particularly a midfield run by All Black Anton Lienert Brown, with Alex Nankivell and Quinn Tupaea also pressing hard for a spot. 

Chiefs coach Warren Gatland.
Chiefs coach Warren Gatland. Photo credit: Getty

"I just want them to be themselves and express themselves," says Lienert-Brown. "That's all I try and do is give them confidence to play their game." 

That free-flowing rugby should be able to shine against the Waratahs on Friday.

But they'll know, if they're not firing from the first whistle, they risk being kicked into touch by another Australian side.

Join us for live updates of Chiefs v Waratahs from 9:15pm Friday