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McKenzie happy with Reds progress

The Reds have passed through the first stage of their Super 15 campaign with flying colours, losing just once to lead the Australian Conference after six rounds.

After starting the year with a splutter, grinding out a win against the Western Force before falling to the Waratahs, the Reds have kicked into life and will head to South Africa having scored 94 points in their last two outings. Two weeks ago the Reds decimated the Rebels with a franchise-record 50-point win, and they backed it up on Saturday with a 41-8 thumping of the Cheetahs.

Reds coach Ewen McKenzie said: "We wanted to get on the plane as a winning team - that was very important."

He added: "There's nothing worse than being on a plane without a win.

"The fact that we're scoring some points is good. We'd been criticised fairly extensively there for a while, but we knew we'd find our way back into the attacking philosophy.

"It's certainly not the finished article, but we've got something to work with."

McKenzie knows his side have not hit top gear, and the final pass is still hitting the turf as often as the intended target.

"You're trying to develop a perfect game in what's really a bunch of chaos," said McKenzie. "There's going to be mistakes. I've never seen a perfect game.

"We just keep plugging away. I think we'll just focus on the upside that we're starting to score tries each week and we're getting wins."

An injury to Ben Lucas was the only dampener on the Reds victory, with the replacement full-back losing his spot on the South African tour to 20-year-old winger Dom Shipperley.

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