"It hurt." Those are the two words Matt To'omua used to describe the heartache of losing to the Queensland Reds at full-time.
The Melbourne Rebels captain missed a post-siren penalty to hand the Queenslanders a 23-21 victory, a moment he's determined to rectify at the next chance.
That opportunity could come against the ladder-leading ACT Brumbies at Canberra Stadium this Saturday, after all To'omua has history on his side.
Indeed, the Rebels are the only Australian team to have beaten the Brumbies at home since May, 2018. They've also won five of their past seven encounters.
Dan McKellar's outfit is chasing an eight-match winning streak in Canberra, but the Rebel's record is giving To'omua confidence to secure victory on foreign turf.
"One thing about being on the road last year was that we were always playing away games. We got comfortable being in that environment and while we've lost some games here, we've definitely won some as well," To'omua said.
"It's not an easy thing to do and not many teams can actually say that. We definitely take a lot of confidence from that, we have a formula that we believe works against them.
"Every year is a little bit different obviously, with changes in personnel and whatnot. But ultimately when the Rebels teams come down here, they've done pretty well."
MORE BRUMBIES NEWS
The Rebels have been based in Canberra for more than two weeks due to the latest COVID-19 developments, ensuring they could travel interstate for their away fixtures following the Holiday Inn outbreak.
Coach Dave Wessels said his team are using the time away from home to their advantage, with Melbourne locked into rugby mode and settled on the road.
"Being away with each other for such a long period of time, I think one of the benefits is that you spend a lot of time together and form good connections with people," Wessels said.
"You talk a lot of rugby too. We have to use that to our advantage, we proved last year we're a team that can win away from home. We know we can do it, but we have to work hard this week.
"The Brumbies are playing really well, we won't be able to just repeat what we did [on the weekend] and expect that to be enough.
"We have to improve in a lot of things we were doing, particularly around our set piece, obviously that's how they get into the games a lot."
SUPER RUGBY AU ROUND THREE
Saturday: ACT Brumbies v Melbourne Rebels at Canberra Stadium, 7.45pm.
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