Dan Lydiate celebrated his new National Dual Contract with the Ospreys and the Welsh Rugby Union by playing a big part in the region’s bonus point win over the Dragons on Saturday.
The 28-year old back rower ‘s new deal was confirmed last Friday and the all-action Lydiate was straight into action as the Ospreys clocked up a 35-17 win at the Liberty Stadium.
Speaking after the game and bearing the signs of another physical outing with a freshly stitched up eye wound, the Wales and Lions man said he was “over the moon” to have signed up again.
“I’m chuffed, I really am” said Lydiate.
“I’m enjoying being here in Ospreylia and being a part of what we are trying to build here. I’ve really settled in and I’m delighted to be with such a good organisation.
“The two years have flown by but time always does go quick if you’re enjoying where you work and you’re passionate about what you do. I’m over the moon to extend my time here on an NDC and I hope that things can get even better, for me and for the Ospreys.”
With the Ospreys having 12 players called up into Rob Howley’s Wales squad for the autumn internationals, Lydiate was one of just two to be released back to play in the derby clash and he said he was pleased to be part of a good team performance:
“I missed the start of the season and I’ve been playing catch-up in October so it was good to come back and wear the black jersey this weekend to get some more minutes under my belt.
“I enjoyed it out there and it was a great win for the team. We’ve worked so hard in pre-season and into the first couple of months of the season to try and put right what was a poor year last season. You saw out there on Saturday that the squad has really stepped up. To get a bonus point win in the circumstances was a great achievement that everyone should be really happy with.
“Hopefully we can use that and take the momentum out to Munster next week, whoever is on the field.”
With the NDC signed, sealed and delivered, Lydiate back up and running after his summer lay-off, the Ospreys flying high in both the PRO12 and Europe, and four tough internationals ahead for Wales, Lydiate said it’s a good time for all concerned as he reflected on the win and looked ahead to the coming weeks:
“Our defence has improved massively on last year, and that’s the work of Brad Davis. We let a couple of soft tries in at the end, which didn’t make a difference to the result as the game was won but I know that Brad won’t be happy. He’s fanatical about that stuff so he’ll make the boys pay in training.
“It’s a tough time of year for the group with big games coming thick and fast while the Wales boys are away. The boys coming in know what they’ve got to do, know their roles, and have a great opportunity to really make a mark over the next few weeks, using the momentum we’ve started building over the last month or so.
“For me, personally, I want to stay fit, get some more game time and hopefully play my part with Wales over the next few weeks and then back at the Ospreys during a very busy couple of months in December and January with some big games to come.”
Tickets for the forthcoming home games against Harlequins (at Swansea RFC), Edinburgh, Grenoble and the Scarlets in November and December are available to buy now, from the Liberty Stadium Ticket Office and online at www.ospreysrugby.com/buytickets