Alun Wyn Jones says that the late rally from the Ospreys at Parc y Scarlets on Boxing Day will give them confidence ahead of the return fixture at the Liberty Stadium a week today.
Having trailed for over an hour without registering on the scoreboard, the Ospreys hit back in style to win the game in the final 10 minutes thanks to an Ian Evans try, converted by Dan Biggar, and Jones acknowledged that his team had to dig deep to extend their winning run over their traditional rivals in a game that was never anything less than entirely absorbing for spectators.
“I think there was a bit of everything there” he told the press after the final whistle.
“Usually, the derbies go one of two ways; either you get a lot of rugby played and it’s unattritional or it’s attritional, you don’t get much rugby and it’s the battle of the boot.
“In fairness to the Scarlets I think they were in the ascendancy for a large proportion of the game even though we had a lot of territory.
“When we got into the 22 I think we were frantic at times in the first half. Once we had that penalty, I think it was around 63 minutes, we had an ‘in’ to the game and sort of kicked on from there.
“Our error account is pretty disappointing but we’ll take heart from the way we rallied at the end. We probably hadn’t been patient enough earlier in the game and tried a little too hard. We coughed up the ball, especially in the first half, and they capitalised on that, playing what was possibly a superior kicking game, for parts of the game at least, which kept us under pressure.
“Sometimes we do put a little too much emotion, or emphasis, on these derby fixtures to the detriment of other games, but I do like the notion of playing them back to back, especially this time of year.
“When I grew up it was watching Llanelli v Swansea on Boxing Day, or when I was first in the academy it was Ospreys v Scarlets. These were the games I grew up watching and wanting to be involved in. It’s a great spectacle that should keep going.”
Asked about Biggar’s outstanding kick to the corner to enable th all-important try scoring drive six minutes from the end, Jones also paid tribute to both the fly-half’s coolness and the way that pack took advantage of his kick to snatch the win
“I think it was [an excellent kick], yeah, but having missed two and then getting the third, there was more pressure on him there than the one to the corner. Like you say though, it was pinpoint, and when a kicker gives you a kick like that you’ve got to make the most of it and fortunately enough, we did.”
Don’t miss the second round of the Domino’s Derby Series, when the Scarlets visit the Liberty Stadium a week today on Friday 3rd January 2013, kicking off at 7.15pm.
Tickets for the game are on sale at the Liberty Stadium Ticket Office and via the Ticket Hotline (0844 815 6665) during opening hours, which can be found here.
Alternatively, you can buy online twenty four hours a day at www.ospreysrugby.com/buytickets