Bitesize press conference

We’ve rounded up all the key points from, Scrum Coach, Duncan Jones’ press conference at Llandarcy on Tuesday, in advance of Saturday’s clash against Stade Francais at the Liberty Stadium.

The game kicks off the second block of the European Challenge Cup, the first of two games against Stade Francais (3pm) over the next two weekends. 

Here’s what he had to say about…

The challenge against Stade Francais:

  • They tend to have a lot of quality across the park. Stade have been going quite well within their domestic competitions, so it should be interesting.
  • They always bring a physical challenge; they’ve always got to bring a little bit extra to the game.
  • We’re at home so it will be really important that we get off to a good start, and try and get the performance and the result that we all want.
  • You never know what a French side are going to bring, but they always bring a big level of physicality and the ability to score to score from everywhere. So we know as a forward pack, we’ll really need to be on the money, start well and hopefully just keep the pressure on them.

Make up of the squad:

  • I think the coaches all the way through have always been aware of what they need, it’s a long season and its also about the whole squad, so I’m sure with a busy festive period coming up, there probably will be some changes.
  • The message that is driven here is that its important for whoever is putting on the jersey that day understands what is expected. We will try and get that team performance and build on that good win from last week.

The Challenge Cup:

  • I think that every competition you play in is hugely important. Whoever gets the opportunity to take to the field, it’s a real chance for them to stake the claim going forward.
  • We understand that we’re going into a busy period in a different competition. But building momentum and building wins is good for whatever competition you enter into.

His role at the Ospreys:

  • It’s been good so far. I really enjoyed that early part, getting to work with some of the younger boys in a different competition, so that’s been good.
  • Looking in and around the scrum, we’ve got some good senior boys who drive a lot of the standards.
  • It’s been good, it’s been enjoyable and we’re heading in the right direction. We just set ourselves a challenge as a group to get better every time we get together, and that it something that will push us forward.

Nicky Smith:

  • Nicky has been really good. Obviously there’s a lot of competition for that loose head position, which is only good. You look at the crop of Welsh loose heads and they are driving each other along.
  • Nicky is a great guy, he works really hard in and around training. Over the last couple of seasons, he has been really pushing on; he’s got that mind-set to want to get better every time.