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New Reds playmaker to attack Jaguares

NZN 23/03/2017 Darren Walton

Jake McIntyre is promising his own brand of attack as he fills Quade Cooper's boots in Queensland's backs-to-the-wall Super Rugby shot at the high-flying Jaguares on Sunday (AEDT).

With just one overseas win in their past 16 games, the Reds must bust their travelling hoodoo without not only the suspended Cooper, but also injured skipper James Slipper and rested flanker George Smith.

Cooper is serving a three-match ban for a dangerous tackle, while Slipper was also a casualty of the Reds' 44-14 loss to the Lions last week, the Wallabies prop ruled out for the season after tearing an Achilles tendon.

McIntyre believes the Reds can still spring a boilover in Buenos Aires in what will be the Argentine outfit's first crack at Australian Super Rugby opposition.

But the stand-in five-eighth knows it won't be easy as the second-placed Jaguares chase a fourth win from five starts with one of the most potent attacking teams in the competition.

Only the defending champion and table-topping Hurricanes boast more than the Jaguares' eight counter-attacking tries from inside their own half.

"They're a very unstructured team. They like to throw the ball around so we're going to have to try to build pressure and not give away cheap possession," McIntyre said.

"They're also a physical side so we're going to have to win the battle up front and hopefully our backs can finish off.

"We spoke about the Lions game and the biggest part of our attack was our patience. We didn't let our game plan unfold."

McIntyre has no plans to try to emulate the mercurial Cooper, but says the Reds' game plan and structures won't change at all with the 22-year-old calling the shots.

"Me and Quade look at the game pretty similar with a very attacking mindset so that bit won't change," he said.

"Obviously our skill sets are a bit different but we all bring our own strengths to the game.

"Starting last year definitely pushed me to the next level. I learnt a lot about my own game and what I need to improve on and Quade coming back has pushed me to be a better player and I think it's starting to bring the best out of me."

McIntyre will form a new-look halves pairing with James Tuttle, who will make his run-on debut after Nick Frisby was relegated to the bench.

Adam Korczyk has replaced Smith at openside flanker, while experienced Wallabies lock Rob Simmons has been dropped for the returning Izack Rodda, who has overcome a head injury.

"George has come off a Japanese season where he has played a lot of rugby and we knew when we signed George and Stephen Moore, that for us to get the best out of them, we just had to manage them," said Reds coach Nick Stiles.

Wallabies captain Moore has been recalled to the starting line-up in place of young hooker Andrew Ready after being benched against the Lions.

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