Maximum effort the starting point for Reds

It sounds like a given but Reds coach Brad Thorn will require nothing but full, 80 minute efforts from his side in 2018.

Maximum effort is the bare minimum for most but since the last time Queensland played finals football, in 2013, that hasn’t exactly been put into practice.

Thorn, speaking at the Super Rugby launch in Brisbane on Sunday, said he would have been “embarrassed” by some of the fan feedback he had received over the past 12 months, which honed in on a lack of on-field effort.

“For me personally, as a player, that would embarrass me,” Thorn said.

“That would hurt me and I couldn’t tolerate that.“I’m not saying that (it was happening) all the time but there were comments there.

People are going to pay their hard earned cash to come and see their team so at the last, they want to be see us competing.

“To me, surely that’s a given, that’s a starting point.”

The Reds advanced to the semi-finals at the Tens – further than any Australian side – and that was off the back of a particularly spirited performance against the Chiefs in the quarters.

The 38-7 win over the Wild Knights, followed by the 19-7 win over the Chiefs, were markedly improved performances compared to their day one showing and that was a sign of the competitive nature of thing young group, according to Thorn.

It was start of the “something” the rookie coach has been particularly eager to see from his side.

We got a feel for it in the second game and improved – we probably should have won – and then the Panasonic game we really started to crack into it,” Thorn said.

“The most enjoyable one was the quarter final where the boys were really up for it.

I loved playing in finals and the boys do, too.“A lot of those young boys, the 19-year-olds – Hocko, Blyth, Perese, Stewart – they’re young boys but they love competing and they love playing.

“They’ve been used to playing in finals for the last couple of years so it doesn’t matter if it’s Tens or flipping a coin, they want to compete and they felt good having a Queensland jersey on.

“They felt good in front of a home crowd so they put stuff out there – it was good.”

All eyes now turn to the Reds’ trial with a Fiji XV at Ballymore on Thursday.

That will be Thorn’s last chance to mix and match combinations, with their season opener against the Rebels, at AAMI Park, on February 23.

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