With a Chiefs Cup final this weekend and the Super 8 competition on the horizon, the Rotorua Boys' High School first XV are on a mission to reach top form.
Aiding them on that mission on Wednesday was a training session with All Blacks assistant coaches Ian Foster and Scott McLeod, two men who know all about achieving success at the highest level.
Rotorua Boys' High School co-director of rugby Deon Muir knows Foster and McLeod well from his own playing days and asked them if they were interested in helping out.
"I played alongside Ian for Waikato and played club rugby with him at Te Awamutu Sports. He eventually became my Waikato coach and Chiefs coach, so it's a long-standing relationship.
"Scotty McLeod is a good mate, he was my best man at my wedding and we played all our rugby together from Colts to the Chiefs. We even went to Japan a year apart from each other. So they are both long-lasting friendships that I call upon," Muir said.
He said both men were at the top of their game as coaches, in the All Blacks system, but also had a lot of time for the development of youth coming through.
"It was a bit of a buzz for our coaches but more so our players. They were like stunned mullets at times, but they got through their work and it was a good day.
"We worked a lot on our counter-attack with Ian and our defence with Scott. To be fair, a lot of our defensive system is what I've learnt from Scott, so it was great, he was just reaffirming what we need to be doing.
"You can do all the coaching in the world and we're always trying to upskill ourselves, but to get those coaches in, we can get knowledge from them but it's more about their clarity of delivery. That was my biggest learning, how clear and concise they are in their delivery and simplifying things, not over complicating," he said.
He said the key message the players took from the session was to focus on performing their key roles effectively.
"The main message was to get your key roles nailed 100 per cent, just practise, practise, repeat, repeat. Then the skill sets you take for granted become natural and you can grow from there. We're always telling them, before you do the flashy stuff, you have to earn the right by doing the basics well."
First XV coach Ngarimu Simpkins said Foster and McLeod were "fantastic" with the players.
"They spoke about Te Toiroa [Tahuriorangi] showing a successful pathway, obviously an old boy of our school now in the All Blacks. That pathway is there and our boys eyes lit up hearing that from an All Blacks coach.
"Ian Foster in particular, he can coach the men, the best in the world, and then come down to our level. He really came down to the boys' level. He spoke about his high school and where he came from, reaffirming that he's only human as well," Simpkins said.