Holley pleased with team performance

Head Coach Sean Holley reflects on a hard fought Magners League win against Munster

Speaking to the media at the Liberty Stadium post-match, he said:

“I’m pleased that we put on a decent performance. The boys showed a lot of desire, particularly in the second half. We were up against it a little bit with the penalty count, but I think we were quite worthy winners in the end.

“Clearly, we are missing key players in our squad, but those boys today put their hand up and we showed what we are about. There’s a good mood in the dressing room, a good spirit. We’ve gelled really quickly this week and that’s always difficult at this time of the year so all credit to them, I’m proud of them.

“We made Jerry Collins captain at Bath, when we had a group of kids playing with him and he did a real good job that week. He doesn’t scream and shout, he gets on with and does his talking on the field. We made him captain this week as soon as we knew Ryan was unavailable, he’s been in this environment through the autumn, and he led from the front again tonight. He gives an edge in attack and defence, we saw him pick and went through the middle a bit tonight, and people respond to him. He’s a quiet operator but a likeable one.

“I thought Dan Biggar showed his maturity tonight, particularly second half. He put us in the corners and gave Munster a bit of their own medicine really, I think there was a touch of the O’Gara’s about his performance! His goal-kicking is pretty good at the moment as well. He had a chance to go for goal at the end, but the players on the pitch made that decision, and Dan was instrumental in that. There was a minute and a half to go, and clearly, if he’d missed the long-range attempt it gives them the ball back with time to play and the referee told him that if he went for the line, it would be last play. Do you take the win, or do you try and stop Munster taking a bonus point and take a risk? I know what I’m happy with. It shows the level of maturity and understanding there.

“Liam Davies hasn’t had been with us long, and hasn’t had a lot of rugby with us yet, but he was outstanding. He’s just been named players player of the day in the changing room and that says a lot. But, I’ve just said in there that no scrum half plays outstandingly well unless they’ve got a good pack in front of them, and credit has to go to our pack tonight. Our scrum went well after a sticky start. I don’t know if there were any preconceived ideas from the officials at the start, but we certainly grew into the scrum and all out front rowers put their hands up tonight. We were up against a pretty much full Munster team there.

“I’ve got to give a mention to the crowd tonight, they were fantastic tonight. I really thought that they got behind the players on a dreadful night, they were awesome. They haven’t had a lot to cheer about out here this season so far, but tonight we’ve gone up against a full-on Munster team, beaten them, and they played a part, thank you very much.”