WHEN the Richmond tsunami came this time, Brisbane was ready.

After 15 straight losses to the Tigers, the Lions said enough was enough, and coach Chris Fagan credited his team's "mental strength" for their 15-point upset win at the Gabba. 

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Despite carrying the hoodoo into the qualifying final, Fagan said his team had gained confidence from its recent encounters with the premier, including a 41-point loss in round 10. 

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Highlights: Brisbane v Richmond

The Lions and Tigers clash in the second qualifying final

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There were some things they had "picked up" from the Tigers and learnt from. 

That mental fortitude was put to the test early by a Richmond team that dominated clearances, contested possessions and inside 50s in the first quarter-and-a-half. 

However, unlike in last year's qualifying final and this year's home-and-away match, Brisbane hung in, turning Richmond's entries away and taking their own chances going inside 50. 

"I thought we showed tremendous mental strength to hang in the game there," Fagan said. 

"There was a period of time early in the second quarter where Richmond hammered away and there was a danger they could take the game from us at that point, but we hung in there and managed to get some momentum ourselves late in that second quarter, which ended up probably being the match-winning time of the game. 

"I thought the mental strength our group showed, their composure under pressure, their understanding when you play in these big games you've got to win them several times, you don't just win them once, I'm just really proud of what they did."

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Fagan: 'These big games, you've got to win them several times'

Watch Brisbane's press conference after the second qualifying final against Richmond

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Brisbane flipped the game with three goals just before half-time as Cam Rayner, Charlie Cameron and Lachie Neale all converted half-chances into goals. 

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Fagan said his team had learnt from its finals losses against the Tigers and GWS last year. 

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'We came out of that finals series feeling pretty good about ourselves because we thought we could actually compete," he said.

"We didn't win those games, but we knew we were in them.

"That was a stepping stone to this year. 

"I know a lot of people probably thought we had a monkey on our back about finals, but I didn't see it that way and we never talked about it that way. 

"We just wanted to get back and give ourselves another opportunity, which our players did by performing well in the home and away, and tonight we've gone out and showed what we learnt.

"I'm just excited for the players and the staff and the club in general.

"It's been a solid journey for the Lions for a few years now, so to get out there and play like that against a great team like the Tigers, I'm very proud of the group."