Press Notes - Thursday 3 January

Date: 3 Jan 2019

Press Conference Notes

Wasps Director of Rugby Dai Young spoke to the media ahead of Sunday’s Gallagher Premiership clash with Northampton Saints at Ricoh Arena (kick-off 3pm).

Here’s what he had to say:

On Harlequins performance

  • We were better last week but we made too many basic errors when we had opportunities. But it was certainly a step up from the week before.

Northampton preview

  • Northampton are our close rivals and there’s never much between the two teams traditionally but we haven’t had the results we’d have liked in the last couple of games, certainly at the Ricoh, so it’s all about getting the result this weekend.
  • We’ve got to do the basics really well, cut out errors and take opportunities. If you look at last weekend we had 60 per cent possession and territory but squandered chances. Coaches always talk about performances but now the result is a bit more important.
  • It hits me hard when we lose at the Ricoh because of the support we’ve had in the Coventry and Warwickshire area, and also the fans who make the trip from London. We have a responsibility to perform and we didn’t against Bath so we have to get that right this week.

Season targets

  • Harlequins sit in fourth and they’ve won five games – the same amount as us. If you can win a couple of games, you can rocket up the table but equally you can shoot down the table if you lose a couple.
  • This is the last game of this block and then there’s a four-game block over the Six Nations period which will pretty much determine where we’ll be.
  • To me the top four isn’t something we’ve given up on, we’re certainly capable of getting there but we need results soon. If we can get somewhere near our best team on the field then we’ll take some beating.

Team/injury news

  • Joe Launchbury will be back which is a shot in the arm. He’s only played three games for us this season.
  • Nathan Hughes arrives back today after a family bereavement so he’ll be available.
  • Gaby Lovobalavu and Juan de Jongh will come back into the mix.
  • Tommy Taylor and Simon McIntyre are still out after eight weeks with concussion.
  • Kieran Brookes is out for an expected 12 weeks with ankle syndesmosis.
  • Dan Robson will be okay after a shin knock last weekend.
  • I probably haven’t had a season with this many injuries. Let’s hope it turns for us in 2019.

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