Match Reaction: Dai Young post Newcastle Falcons
Date: 18 Nov 2017
Following Wasps' 40-10 win against Newcastle Falcons in the Aviva Premiership, Director of Rugby Dai Young was unsurprisingly extremely happy with his side's performance.
"I'm really happy, I thought it was a really good performance. The first 25 minutes, I thought we were excellent. We took our foot off the pedal a little bit in the last 15 minutes of the first half, which allowed Newcastle to get back into the game and the momentum was then with them. Half-time came at the right time for us. I thought we'd lost the momentum then. So the first 20 minutes of the second-half was always going to be huge for us to put the game out of sight.
"To be honest with you, the boys were excellent both sides of the ball, defensively we were organised, kept them moving up, making the tackles, kept on working them. When we had any ball, we always looked dangerous. To score so many points is only going to help our confidence as a team. It was a really good performance, there's obviously still things to work on. Not everything went to plan but I think we've been building nicely over the last couple of weeks."
Asked about how impressed he was with his side's retention of the ball for long periods, Young said:
"That's always a work-on for us, not to get too excited and impatient. We wanted to show that composure with the ball and that patience and then back that up with the accuracy to play. I thought we had a good balance between our running game and our kicking game as well. When it wasn't on to run, or we felt that we were under pressure, our kicking game was very good, but then we had the ability when we had the time and the space to run. So I was really pleased and I could see that coming through in the week. The players have trained really well and they went out and gave the performance.
"Obviously, you never have too much time to dwell on a win, the same as you don't have too much time to dwell on a loss, but we'll look at areas where we thought we did well today, there was a lot of them, and we'll build on that. And we'll work on one or two things that we've got to patch up for next week and hopefully go and get a win on the road next week."
Young was also delighted to see Kyle Eastmond make his comeback today and put in a strong performance, before he was forced off.
"I thought Kyle had a tremendous 39 minutes, 39 seconds. I thought he was outstanding. He showed his distribution skills just in case anyone had forgotten about how good he is with the ball. He carries with two hands and he always puts the opposition defence in two minds about what he's going to do. I thought his distribution skills were excellent, putting people in space, as well as being an individual threat himself. And even though he's not the biggest, he certainly knows how to defend. His organisation and talk, making sure people are in the right positions is always excellent with him.
"He made that try-saving tackle and took a bump to the head. Obviously, it's right and proper that with any bump to the head you go off for a HIA. Although he's not too bad and he's talking and fine, these days if you get a direct bump to the head you're going off. That was pretty much the case. He's in there chatting to the guys and he's enjoyed his 40 minutes. He looked really sharp. I said to him after if that's what a bad Achilles does to you, I'm quite happy for you to have a couple more of them!" joked Wasps DoR.
"It's great for him as well because to rehab for as long as he did, it's a dark place. Because when you're in rehab, you're spending a lot of time on your own, a lot of time in the gym when the other players are doing other things. So it's tough no matter where you are and you can't make it any easier than it is. He's worked his socks off to get back. I think anyone who saw his 40 minutes will recognise what a quality player he is."
Young wasn't just impressed with Eastmond's performance, the Director of Rugby was happy with everyone's effort today.
"I don't think we had a bad performance out of anybody today. When you make subs, 90 per cent of the time it's not because somebody isn't playing well, it's just when you've got the type of players we have on the bench, bringing them on is always going to add a little bit of impact.
"We know what Gaby can do as well. He adds that physicality. He's got some great footwork and some great ball skills as well. The strength we have coming off the bench in that position is huge and everyone talks about having a 23 man game and I'm a big believer in that. The game is really tough now and if you've got that type of quality coming off the bench, it's only going to add to good performances and hopefully get the right results.
"I thought that was James Gaskell's best game since he's come back from his foot injury. I think Will Rowlands has been excellent. He's gone through his development over the last couple of seasons and got better and better and I think he looks like a real quality, comfortable Premiership player now. Wadey's starting to look like he's got a bit more confidence with the ball in hand. So I'm really pleased with every player's performance out there today. We're starting to look like a bit more of a confident team. Confidence can erode very quickly, we know that, so we've got to make sure we keep on banging the drum and keep on telling the players to improve individually and collectively."