London Wasps are no strangers to Italian Rugby, having played Rovigo in last year’s Amlin Challenge Cup and Treviso during this year’s preseason preperations. Tommy Bell says that the squad knew how tough the fixture against Mogliano would be, having lost that game to Treviso and only picking up the bonus point in Rovigo with the last play of the game.
“It is always tough coming away to these games, travelling away, we had a long day travelling yesterday. You always know that the Italian sides are going to be physical and that physical mentality will make life difficult at the break down but our boys did very well in responding to that, kept the tempo up and managed to put almost 60 points away against a tough side.We did get several other opportunities to score more points and if we had been able to make those passes find hands or hold on to them we could have made life a bit easier but at the end of the day we scored 9 tries today.
Bell, who was given the Man of the Match award by the Italian press, kicked his first 7 conversions in fine form, finishing the game with 7 from 9.
“I think I hit the last one a bit too high so it was tough to tell whether it had gone over or if it drifted at the last minute but I was pretty pleased with my goal kicking as a whole today.”
The younger of the two Bell brothers highlighted the two games, home and away, against Bayonne as two decisive fixtures in his team’s European campaign, but was quick to add that an away trip to Rodney Parade would be no walk in the park
“The two games against Bayonne are going to be two really decisive games. We have to travel out to France first which is going to very hard before then facing them at Adams Park the following week. They are going to be a really tough team. They have a number of threats throughout their team but the boys are all looking forward to that challenge. The whole squad is also aware that travelling to Newport and getting a win will be a tough ask. They showed that they are a good side last weekend at our place.”
Wasps now move away from the Amlin Challenge Cup and return to Aviva Premiership action with a crunch fixture against London Welsh this Sunday. Bell says that after 3 back-to-back wins he is hoping the side continue that form at the weekend.
“We have won three on the bounce now as a side and we will hope to take that form into this weekend against London Welsh. We played them in the A League the other night and they had a very strong side out which goes to show the sort of outfit they are. Next weekend will be a tough test, there’s no doubt about. This is a local derby for us now and going back into the Premiership we know that every game is important. There will be a big week of training this week and we will have to be fully prepared for them come Sunday.”