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Sam Jones: We must face Irish head on

We catch up with Sam Jones after the heart-wrenching loss to Harlequins and ahead of this weekend's battle with London Irish at Adams Park.

Jones, who, in his typically tireless performance, hit 23 rucks against Harlequins last weekend, the top stat from the game, was clearly gutted by the result. Having had a bit of time to reflect, the 22-year-old is clearly focused on his side making sure they don’t miss out in such cruel fashion again.

“Obviously we are all very disappointed, we all looked back at the game and although we had the majority of possession, territory and generally good defence, we have picked out that our accuracy and our discipline wasn’t good enough to hold onto the win.”

“To lose by one point again is bitterly disappointing and after the game everyone was extremely deflated. Having had some time to reflect on it, it wasn’t a bad performance but there are some clear areas for us to improve. We should have shut that game out with probably five minutes to go. We had a lot of territory and enough chances but then we let them back into it through a few errors in defence and our poor discipline.”

“We were relatively happy with a one point loss at the start of the season in the London Double Header but we have come an awful long way since then and last weekend nobody in this side was satisfied with putting in a good performance without getting the result.”

This Saturday, Jones and his teammates return to Adams Park where they will take on London Irish in the fourth meeting between the two sides this season. The young back rower says that the team are focused on what will be a very tough task.

“The pressure to win would have been the same win or lose last weekend but we need that win even more now in terms of really pushing up the table. It is so close points-wise and London Irish got a great win at the weekend so they will be on a bit of role from that. We really need to pick ourselves up and come out to face Irish head on. We seem to have faced them a few times this season and, although we have come out on top in each fixture so far, it will probably be a bit like facing a wounded animal and we will need to be playing at the top of our game.”

This week, voting opened for the LV= Breakthrough Player Award and, having impressed with his performances in the LV=Cup, Jones is among the nominees along with fellow Wasp Jonah Holmes. Jones says to be nominated is a huge honour.

“It feels great to be nominated and Wasps Community have been drumming up quite a bit of support which I am very thankful for. It is a great award but the other nominees have all performed very well so I am not holding my breath!”

To vote for Sam for the LV= Breakthrough Player Award go to www.LV.com/rugby.

To purchase tickets for this Saturday's Aviva Premiership fixture with London Irish at Adams Park go to www.wasps.co.uk/tickets.

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