Press Notes - Wednesday 12 December

Date: 12 Dec 2018


Press Conference Notes

Wasps Director of Rugby Dai Young spoke to the media ahead of Saturday’s Heineken Champions Cup clash with Toulouse at Stade Ernest Wallon (kick-off 4.15pm local time).

Here’s what he had to say:

Last weekend/current form

  • There are little things we’re not getting right which could’ve been the difference at the weekend.
  • Two first-phase tries is where we lost the game. The last time we did that was in the first game of the season so it’s not something that’s caused us problems throughout the season - but it was also about our ability with the ball that let us down.
  • In the last 20 minutes against Toulouse we had the majority of the possession and territory but we failed to break them down so that was disappointing and summed up the game.
  • I think we’ve looked better as a team over the last two or three weeks but little things need to improve. Turnovers hurt us the previous week as they did last week. There will be turnovers but unforced turnovers we have to take out of our game.

 

Review so far this season

  • What our DNA has been over the past few seasons is our ability to score tries and points. We haven’t been as effective with the ball this season.
  • We have to get back to scoring tries and playing the rugby we know we can play.
  • Our bigger swing is in our inability to score 20-30 points every week which we’ve done in the past.
  • We lost our top try-scorer in Christian Wade while Willie Le Roux hasn’t played much this season - when he had the top assists in the league last year – and we haven’t had that consistency in the backline to play the rugby we want. It’s been a bit of a battle but we have to keep working. The players care and they want to rectify things.

 

Injury/team news

  • Nathan Hughes has a hip/pelvis injury. We’ll see how it settles down but he is very unlikely to play this weekend. We’ll see if it needs further investigation but we don’t think it’s long-term.
  • Tom Cruse has a knee injury and has gone for scan. He won’t be fit this weekend. Hopefully it’s not too bad but it’ll probably be weeks rather than days.
  • Kieran Brookes has been struggling with a groin knock but it was a knock to his ribs that saw him come off the field on Saturday.
  • Simon McIntyre (concussion) is not available and is seeing a specialist next week. Tommy Taylor (concussion) is going through the protocol and could be eligible for the weekend but it’s a long shot.
  • Jimmy Gopperth (ACL) isn’t running yet but is about to embark on that shortly. His recovery is looking positive but this part of rehab coming up will determine how soon he’ll be back.
  • Dan Robson and Joe Launchbury might be back for the Harlequins or Northampton Saints games later this month and in the New Year.
  • Brad Shields has been struggling with an ankle problem and could be ruled out. At some point he needs a break and an injection in it. We’ll see how he is in the next 48 hours.
  • Any players that are fit will be playing this weekend as we haven’t got the luxury of a fully-fit squad.