Australia's skills are on a par with the All Blacks, says Wallabies assistant coach Mick Byrne.

Byrne who joined the Aussies two years ago after 11 years honing the All Blacks' skills, said the challenge now is for the Wallabies to deliver during games, he told

He was pleased with the progress of the players, particularly the passing of the forwards.

The key to transferring training skills on to the field during games was the belief gained through consistency and success.


"If anyone has ever had a lesson of some sort, whether it be golf or tennis, the first time you go out onto the golf course and start trying new golf swings it's always a bit uncomfortable," Byrne said.

"Then you get comfortable with it and get confident. Our guys certainly have the skill level, and the confidence, they've displayed it over the year.

"During the June series they got more confidence and belief in what they're doing and our boys are in a good position to push on.

"We're in great shape with that, we've progressed really well, each individual player obviously will look to get better."

Byrne also believes the Wallabies won't be found lacking in the fitness department, after Super Rugby sides also collaborated with coach Michael Cheika's staff on conditioning programmes.

Last year Cheika was so unhappy with the fitness levels of Wallabies players that he spent most of June and in pre-Bledisloe camps doing pre-season-style work.

"I think it's the best shape coming out of Super Rugby, yeah, for sure. When I say shape, I talk about the conditioning, I know last year there was a lot made of the conditioning we had to do in our camp," Byrne said.

"It was great to go into our camp this year and be really focused on the way we want to play the game and all the work you want to get done. Playing that game on Friday you saw the shape the boys were in, so I would say we're in better physical shape than we were this time last year."

Byrne, who is good mates with All Blacks coach Steve Hansen, could only laugh when asked about the All Blacks coach bestowing the tag of favourite on the Wallabies.

"Steve's always had a great sense of humour and I really appreciate his humour," Byrne said.