Highlanders to benefit from Rebels outing

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Lynn McConnell     31 Mar 2016     Getty Images

As they prepare to play the Force in Dunedin on Friday they can be expected to show the benefits of the reminder they had.

Flanker Shane Christie said the Rebels had played well in the first 30-40 minutes.

"They stopped all our attack moves and the pressure they had on defence was really good. It was good to be put under that pressure and we managed to slowly break them down and get some good tries through pressure at the end of the game," he said.

However, being forced to work hard and adapt was useful for the side.

"We come to new hurdles and different obstacles and if you can adapt really quickly as a team you might get a bit of success but yeah, it was good we had that pressure in the first 20 and we had to adapt a lot.

"We had a few mistakes that normally we would have capitalised on but we didn't, so we came out of it pretty good," he said.

The side had benefited by some relaxation time after their effort in beating the Waratahs in Sydney a week earlier. They stayed on in Manly to prepare for the Rebels, not travelling until the Thursday before the game.

"It was good to have some relaxation after the Waratahs game and by staying in Manly it was useful to relax and hang out as a team," he said.

"The Rebels are quite a good team, they had won three from four so we didn't expect anything less. We prepared like we do for any team. They played really well and I suppose the teams they have played against this year haven't been top New Zealand teams but we didn't really think about that too much, we just knew they'd been playing some good footy," he said.

While noting the Rebels had been on the end of a thumping by the Chiefs last weekend they had been going all right and had produced some good performance.

"But we're mainly focusing on us as we've got a short turnaround this week. There's not long to get our new moves and all our new stuff sorted out because we've only really had two days to get organised after the travel and a day off on Monday," he said.

But the side was in good shape physically.

"We don't have any injuries really. No-one's really got any niggles and we've got a bye in two weeks. It will be good but the team is really fresh, the coaches look after us pretty well. As long as we prepare and are accurate we don't need to be out in the field [practising] all day," he said.