Steve Tandy has described the Ospreys supporters as 'fantastic' after the backing they gave their team at the Millennium Stadium last weekend as they cheered the region on to a vital win over Cardiff Blues - and has called on them to repeat the feat at the final home game of the regular season.
Italian side Benetton Treviso arrive at the Liberty on Saturday 13th April, fresh from defeating the Blues themselves in their last outing, for a match that the Ospreys simply cannot afford to lose if they are to secure a top four spot for the end of season play-offs.
Reflecting on Saturday’s experience in Cardiff, Tandy thanked the supporters for their efforts from the stands:
“Our fans were fantastic on Saturday”he said.
“They were there in big numbers and I’d say they were the most noticeable, vocally and visually, and the boys really appreciated the support they got.
“It was an important game, not just because it was Judgement Day but in terms of our play-offs hopes, so it was crucial that we got the win. The fans realised that and travelled to Cardiff in big numbers, which was great to see. They’ve been the same all season long, home and away, and we are grateful for their ongoing support. It’s great to see them backing the cause.
“We are building momentum on and off the field at the right time and we need to take this into the final three games now, starting with Treviso a week on Saturday. That is just as big a game for us as the Blues one was, as we need to keep winning if we are going to reach the play-offs. There’s no room to slip-up whatsoever. We need a big crowd again at the Liberty for that one, just as passionate and vocal as they were at the Millennium last weekend.
“Ultimately, we need bums on seats, getting behind their team, their region.”
Tandy’s thoughts were echoed by Ospreys skipper Alun Wyn Jones, who said:
“Judgement Day appears to have been a big success with a good crowd turning out for two derby games. From an Ospreys perspective it was really pleasing to see so many supporters making the trip and getting behind the team.
“They certainly made their presence felt, with their flags flying and they were the loudest of the four on the day, and I have to thank them on behalf of the team for their ongoing support.
“It’s got to be a case of ‘same again’ next weekend for the Treviso game. We have to win, it’s as simple as that, but we’ve all seen this season just how good Treviso are. They are capable of beating anyone. It’s not going to be easy by any stretch of the imagination so we’ll need to be at our absolute best and put in a much-improved performance.
“The supporters will have a huge part to play as well, we need them to be with us on matchday, doing their bit just as they did at the Millennium. If we are going to defend our title, we will have to do it the hard way, and we’ll need everyone pulling together, so hopefully they’ll be out in numbers making themselves heard back at the Liberty.”
Tickets for the crunch PRO12 game against Treviso at the Liberty Stadium on Saturday 13th April (KO 6.30pm) are on sale now via the Ticket Office, online at ospreysrugby.com/buytickets and through the Ticket Hotline 0n 0844 815 6665.