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Glad to get under way despite the defeat against Tigers
2:37pm Tuesday 10th September 2013 in Sport
IT was good to finally get a meaningful game under our belts when we opened our Aviva Premiership campaign at Leicester at the weekend after a long, drawn-out three months.
There was plenty of nervous energy in the squad and, with it being a Sunday game, meant there was that bit longer to wait until game-day.
We will certainly benefit from the experience, but we were all disappointed as a group with the way the game went.
In the first 40 minutes, our biggest test was discipline — sometimes it is over-eagerness, trying too hard and getting caught up in the heat of the moment.
We just over-stepped the mark and gave away too many penalties and teams like Leicester just feed off that as it gives them field position and possession.
I think we were so pumped up for the game and sometimes that can spill over into indiscipline — perhaps entering into rucks illegally or being on the wrong side.
In the second-half, when you look at the score having been 25-3 down, there were two ways that game could have gone. We could have been on the end of a real beating, but we showed some real character to play some pretty good rugby and get ourselves back into the game.
We had a few opportunities when we got it back to 25-17 to go on and get something from the game, but a few things didn’t go our way and Leicester then scored that late try.
We will be better for the experience, though, and we can learn a fair bit from it — you learn the most from the best teams and Leicester are certainly one of those. However, we need to learn fast and we have a big game with London Irish at Sixways this weekend.
We have to show pride in the Worcester jersey and character is non-negotiable, we have to show that for 80 minutes every week. We just need a bit more intellect towards the finer details.
We are fortunate to have strength in depth in several positions –— such as nine and 10 — while in certain positions we are a bit light.
Ignacio Mieres was one of the players making their debuts. He is so dedicated and you should see the hours he puts in on the training field. He studies the opposition hard too and will be a great acquisition for us.
If you look at someone like Mike Williams, another on debut, he is a really big guy, but he is only 22. It is frightening how much potential he has and to play like he did in such a game at his age is testament to him.
When you play the top teams, you will need a bit of X-factor to break them down and Josh Matavesi certainly has that. We are fortunate to have the likes of him, Josh Drauniniu, David Lemi and Chris Pennell in our back-line and they can all create something out of nothing.