Steve Tandy has challenged his players to improve their discipline and defence after watching them secure a winning bonus point in Galway with three tries in each half.
Despite dominating for periods of the game, it wasn’t until the final 10 minutes that the Ospreys were able to put real daylight between themselves and Connacht, the Irish side pulling back to within three points during the second half.
As pleased as he was to see the Ospreys finish the game off in style, Tandy made it clear post-match that there were areas of their game needing to improve before back-to-back home games, against Ulster in the PRO12 and Leinster in an eagerly awaited Heineken Cup opener, over the nest two weekends.
Speaking shortly after the final whistle, Tandy said:
“It’s a big achievement to run in six tries in a game whoever you are playing, so obviously I’m very pleased at what we’ve done here tonight.
“We’ve had a very tough start to the season, with three of our first four games away from home, so to be talking now after four games and we’re still unbeaten, that’s a great effort from everyone who has worn the shirt this month. They all deserve a pat on the back for that.
“Our attacking game over the last couple of weeks has been very good, we’re heading in the right direction in that aspect of the game and it’s pleasing as a coach to see the team making strides in that area.
“Other areas of our game are letting us down though. There is lots of work to be done on our discipline and our defence. It’s not quite clicking and I think at times tonight we were a little bit vulnerable. When you fall short in those areas you allow teams to stay in the game longer then they deserve and I think that was the case out there.
“But still, scoring six tries away from home is an excellent achievement. We all know that for various reasons we didn’t have the threat behind that we would have liked last season and we are trying to develop our game. We’ve recruited well over the summer and there’s competition throughout the squad now and I think we are seeing the benefits at the moment in our attacking game.
“The message in the changing room though was they can’t think they are the finished article because that’s definitely not the case, far from it. If we can keep developing as we have done and improve our discipline and defence then we’ll have a chance.”
On a personal note, it was a special evening for 23-year old Dan Biggar who scored 18 points to take him over 1000 in the tournament, only the second ever player to do so. To have reached that landmark in only 94 league games made it even more remarkable, and Tandy paid a special tribute to Dan. He said.
“It’s incredible that someone so young has achieved what he has in this competition, but no less than he deserves.
“He is the complete professional in everything he does, he is hard working, diligent and an example for others to follow. I’ve gone on record many times to say how highly I rate him. He has always been fantastic for the region, he is proud to play for his local team, and I’m absolutely thrilled that people are starting to acknowledge what he is about.”