Mufti day: The Waratahs trained in their club kits on Monday. Photo: Ben Rushton
The Waratahs will zero in on their set-piece this week to arrest an unexpected decline in quality there this season.
While the NSW lineout improved in the second half of the side's 28-23 loss to the Brumbies on Saturday, the Waratahs' scrum also struggled.
And while referee Jaco Peyper's predilection for leisurely resets also appeared to hamper the Waratahs' late comeback, second-rower Kane Douglas said there were no excuses for the side's recent lack of consistency.
"We were just patchy, there were some where we looked all right and some where we didn't," Douglas said. "We've tried to address that consistency and be better on every one, not just think we did good on the last one so we can rest on our laurels.
"It's probably just about doing it more at training and making it more of a focus so it's second nature out there."
Coach Michael Cheika is expected to keep faith with the starting team that lost in Canberra when he names the squad to play the Rebels on Tuesday, with some tinkering in the front row the only possible change. He may also shuffle the bench to give midfield option Jono Lance or back-rower Tala Grey their opportunities.
Grey, who moved back to Australia from France to join the Waratahs this season, would replace Stephen Hoiles, but the latter's lineout expertise is the stumbling block in that decision.
The Waratahs benefited from captain Dave Dennis' return from injury but need all the help they can get after two unexpectedly wobbly displays early in the season.
Douglas has been a consistent performer so far, notching three 80-minute performances and impressing with his work-rate.
The loss of Mitchell Chapman in the pre-season has limited Cheika's options in the second row, but Douglas has combined well with both Jacques Potgieter and Will Skelton.
"There's always a few things you want to work on ... I jammed in on who I thought was going to be the ball runner [Sam Carter] and they passed it to [Stephen Moore], but I've been sort of happy," he said.
"I know I've been working hard and as long as I keep my work-rate up and do the things you don't need talent for getting to a ruck, working back – everything else will come."
Meanwhile, the NSW Rugby Union announced Magners Irish Cider as the naming rights sponsor for this year's Shute Shield, which kicks off at the end of the month. It is the first time since 2010 the competition has had a naming rights sponsor.