Scott Robertson, Richie Mo'unga and the Crusaders' pursuit of perfection.

If the Waratahs' assignment looks like Mission Impossible this weekend, then perhaps even Tom Cruise should stay home as complacency is not a word that is tolerated within Scott Robertson's Crusaders.

After five titles in five years, you could be forgiven for thinking Super Rugby's most successful franchise might struggle to get up for the fledgling Trans-Tasman series, but they will not underestimate a NSW team that is showing signs of improvement and is a club that always seems to give them a spot of trouble - no matter the path of their respective seasons.

It should be no surprise, really, given the Crusaders have written an amazing success story since the arrival of Robertson, who, after replacing franchise favourite and former coach Todd Blackadder in 2017, has built the winning record of 53-5-8 in the four years that have followed.

Just what makes Robertson such a special coach has been picked apart continually, while many New Zealanders, particular those in the south island, continue to ask why he was overlooked for the All Blacks job in favour of Ian Foster.

But the All Blacks' loss has been the Crusaders' [additional] gain as Robertson continues to drive a culture of excellence that has pushed the red-and-black juggernaut onwards when other teams might have put the cue in the rack.

"First and foremost he promotes the team; it's a team sport, so he's got an ability to have 37 players to be driven for one goal, which takes an art," Crusaders scrum-half Bryn Hall, who arrived at the club at the same time as Robertson, explained to ESPN. "I think some clubs, both in the present and the past, might struggle to get all 37 players engaged and be on the same direction and on the same movement.

"So one of Ray's [Robertson] biggest strengths is to be able to get the full group to be able to pull towards one goal which is obviously winning championships. And then on a personal level he's been able to connect with the players and has a good understanding of what that player needs; whether that's a bit of love and needing a bit of support, or to give them a harsh, stern word; he's got a great ability at being able to do that.

"But the coaches he's had around him have also been really good. I look at the likes of Leon MacDonald who was there in my first years, Ronan O'Gara, Scott Hansen's been in, Jason Ryan, Andrew Goodman. So he's got a great ability to build culture, but then he's got the great coaches around him who are able to nail detail, to nail other messages that he's probably not strong at. So collectively, not only Razor, all the coaches that he's had have really supported him really well throughout the five years I think."

The Crusaders' most recent title triumph was a second straight Super Rugby Aotearoa championship when they recovered from a slight midseason dip that saw them drop two games and be pushed to golden point in another. But they regrouped to knock off the Chiefs in the final, briefly celebrate that win, and then look towards Super Rugby Trans-Tasman, which they began with a narrow defeat of a determined Brumbies outfit.

The question of motivation is certainly a valid one, or at least how it is they continue to strive for near perfection - which was very nearly achieved in a blistering first half against the Reds in Brisbane last week.

"It is [the pursuit of perfection], I think for us obviously you have goals to be in positions to win championships, that's the overall goal," Hall told ESPN. "But we know there are lots of steps for us to be able to get to that because we know how hard it is, it comes down to a few things.

"We're a driven group, we're a really driven group, who want to get better, and while some people might get complacent, for us in our group if you have any form of complacency you're probably going to lose your spot in the team due to the depth that we have in our group.

"So the competitiveness that we have at every single training leads to us being able to perform on the training paddock every single day. And then the flow-on effect is to be able to go onto the field [and perform] because we've got such depth in our group we know that if you're not on at training you're not going to be playing and you're not going to be a part of what we've been building here.

"So complacency isn't a thing we have in our group and again I think it's just us striving to be better every single day, and if you have those kinds of traits where you're working hard and making sacrificial acts or being selfless, it leads to a successful season and team."

Former All Blacks coach Steve Hansen once described the Crusaders as having a "Rolls Royce" pack, such was the All Black quality in their forward unit. Many of those players have moved on, yet the Crusaders continue to churn out uncompromising, athletic and skillful forwards who seem to slot seamlessly into the team's attacking structure.

Hall had a chuckle when asked about that comment, but he knows just how good he has it behind a forward unit that seldom fails to deliver quality ball for the Crusaders' star-studded backline.

"Yeah it does, obviously I've been very fortunate and as an inside back it's great, I've probably been in teams in the past when it isn't like that, and individually and as a team it's hard to get on that front foot and to be able to get momentum and play how you want to," Hall said when asked whether it was a breeze playing behind the Crusaders forwards.

"We're pretty fortunate here that, if you look back when I first came into the squad, we had seasoned All Blacks who'd played a lot of Test matches so we had a lot of experience; to be able to learn off them and go through with them for the first time was really beneficial for my game and our game.

"And then from that our coaching staff, a lot of our players left in 2019, and they did really well to be able to mould the young fellas coming through. Our senior All Blacks who were there at the time played a lot of minutes, but the guys who were coming up through the ranks like Mitchell Dunshea, Quinten Strange, Ethan Blackadder, those boys had been able to have a little bit of a taste of what it was like in Super Rugby and big games.

"So I think the development of those young guys coming through who are now focal parts in our [2021] team it's just a credit to our development."

And then there is the man who is arguably the most talented rugby player anywhere on the globe right now, an individual capable of turning even the slightest of opportunities into five- and then seven points, while also continuing to hone his fly-half craft and the art of steering a team around the paddock

"It's almost a really surreal feeling, I guess, some gaps he goes through, like you look at that Reds performance on the weekend, he singlehandedly took over that game and was a massive reason why we won," Hall said of what it was like to watch Richie Mo'unga play from mere metres away.

"The thing with Rich is that he does it consistently week in, week out, in big moments, and he's done it time and time again in our big finals games. He's a big-game player and he's massive for us. And I guess for me as a halfback it's really important that if I can get him that lightning quick ball and put him in great positions to be able to go and rove and run, like he did on the weekend and he has in the past, then my job is done.

"So it comes back to us and our forward pack to be able to get good go-forward ball for him and then his ability to play off our forward runners off pivot plays and block plays, it's world class.

"But he's in a rich vein of form and for me to be able to watch it [close up] it's pretty special and hopefully we can keep giving him the platform he needs because he's world class when he gets time and space like he did on the weekend."

The culture of ownership and absolute day-in day-out excellence has the Crusaders on track for even more silverware - although a missed bonus point first-up in Super Rugby Trans-Tasman may yet hurt - with the journey taking them to Wollongong on Saturday afternoon.

It looks like being one-way traffic - the bookmakers have the Crusaders as $1.01 favourites - but there is no way Robertson's team will think beyond the opening stages of their match with the Waratahs, intent on nailing the processes that will set them on the path to victory - and perhaps a touch of Mo'unga magic.

"They always seem to get up for us and we've always had tough matches against the Waratahs," Hall said. "The last time we came to Sydney we lost that game, and the year before they were up 28-0 in the first half and we ended up just coming back. So whether they're in a rebuild or not, they're a strong team and we'll give them the respect that they deserve.

"So we're under no impression that it's going to be a tough game but if we control what we can control, and put them under pressure where we can, execute when we've got the ball, then we give ourselves the greatest opportunity to win on the weekend."

If things continue as they are, and Robertson inks an extension with the Crusaders, it may just be that Hall, Mo'unga and the other 30-odd blokes in the squad end up with more titles than Cruise has Mission Impossible films.

Given the regularity at which the actor knocks his flicks out, that will be no mean feat.