Super history drives Rebels against Reds

With Super Rugby history on the line, the Melbourne Rebels have put their Sydney heartbreak to bed.

The Rebels sit precariously in eighth place, needing to win both of their final two games to secure the club's first play-off berth in eight seasons of trying.

Victory over the struggling Queensland Reds in Brisbane on Friday will be enough for Dave Wessels' team if the ninth-placed Sharks lose to the Stormers in Cape Town.

If not, it will come down to a daunting final-round match against the Highlanders.

Wessels isn't looking that far ahead, although he believes his team can win in Dunedin if that's what is required.

"I think we can beat most teams in this comp if we play to our potential," he said.

"The players are right up for it. The great thing about being in play-off contention is that you don't have to a lot of motivating as a coach."

Wessels says his players have moved on from Friday's 31-26 loss to the Waratahs when they leaked two late tries.

He says the highly-competitive performance against the Australian conference leaders underlined the strides they'd made since a 45-point drubbing from the Crusaders in early May.

That result capped a five-match losing streak which threatened to scupper their post-season hopes.

"We feel like we certainly have improved over the last two months or so," Wessels said.

"I'm proud of the boys for the style of rugby that we're trying to play because it is what we said we were going to do.

"We said we'd try to be brave and play in a way that makes the people of Melbourne proud."

Against the Reds, they'll again be without influential lock Adam Coleman, who was injured in the third Test loss to Ireland.

Countering that, Wessels can call on wing Marike Koroibete, who has overcome a back spasm, while four-Test Wallabies prop Tetera Faulkner is available again after another period on the sidelines.