Hynes over the Mooney with Reds' passion - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Hynes over the Mooney with Reds' passion

By Jim Morton 16/05/2008 12:12:21 PM Comments (0)

Wallabies smokey Peter Hynes has praised Reds coach Phil Mooney for restoring lost pride and passion in the Queensland jersey ahead of Saturday night's high-stakes Super 14 showdown with NSW.

Winger Hynes, in career-best form, commended Mooney's style and substance in helping the rebuilding Reds regain respect after a disastrous 2007 under the autocratic Eddie Jones.

In a subtle critique of Jones, Hynes felt the former Wallabies coach lacked the passion and single-minded focus needed for the job.

"Phil Mooney has done fantastic things with the Reds and Phil's a passionate Queenslander which is a pleasant change," he said.

"Eddie was Eddie and he had his own style and unfortunately we didn't perform well under it.

"He moved on and we moved on and we've got a coach who's a passionate Queenslander and he just wants Queensland to go well.

"He's restoring that passion and that history back into the jumper and that's what we need."

Jones led a flat, beat-up Queensland to last year's wooden-spoon, finishing in embarrassing fashion with a 92-3 humiliation by the Bulls.

Hynes, rated by Waratahs enforcer Rocky Elsom as NSW's main danger, said there was no chance they would capitulate in the same manner on Saturday night.

He warned NSW they would be far more aggressive and spirited than last season when Queensland failed to fire a shot in their 26-13 loss to the Waratahs in Sydney.

The Reds have scared playoff contenders the Crusaders, Blues and Chiefs in the last three weeks and they have enough motivation for five teams.

The main spur is a fitting farewell for retiring flanker David Croft and five departing Reds but Hynes didn't hide his enthusiasm for knocking third-placed NSW out of the semi-finals.

"We really love the fact that we could potentially end their season and that's a huge motivation for us," he said.

Mooney's change from Jones' forward-oriented style to a more expansive game and his relaxed demeanour has not only transformed the Reds' outlook but also Hynes's.

Hynes highlighted his form surge with a brilliant swerving, tackle-breaking try against the Crusaders.

The versatile winger, who can also play fullback and outside centre, is strongly in the mix for a Wallabies bench spot and is expected to be named in Australia's 30-man Test squad on June 2.

"It's been hard being on the end of the food chain when a team is not playing well," he said.

"You are living on scraps, I guess. The wider out the harder it gets.

"The ELVs and our more expansive style have helped. And now we're not afraid to have a crack and that suits my game."

While the Waratahs have a bevy of Test candidates, the best the Reds can hope for is five, led by Brumbies-bound hooker Stephen Moore.

Skipper James Horwill is challenging for a starting lock's berth and World Cup revelation Berrick Barnes could be reunited with Matt Giteau in the inside backs while Hynes and young halfback Ben Lucas are on the fringe.

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