Jonathan Spratt has urged the Ospreys to take their second half momentum from Saturday into this weekend’s game against Bath and ensure they get off to a good start at the Rec.
A sluggish opening quarter at Kingsholm saw a young Ospreys team falling 14 points behind, leaving them a mountain to climb, but their never say die attitude saw them clawing their way back into the contest, scoring three tries and pressing for a score that would level the contest in the closing minutes.
Looking back at the game, skipper Spratt, said that it was essential the Ospreys enjoyed a better opening when they travel to face Bath this Saturday afternoon.
“It was a hard fought game, right to the end, but the reality is that no matter how well we did in the second half, we lost the match because we made too many mistakes” said the Wales centre.
“We gave up field position too easily in the first half and they scored a lot of points off our mistakes. We put up a good effort but we lacked the discipline needed to win tight games. That’s down to inexperience I guess, but it’s something that we have to improve.
“We train together, day in day out, week in week out, but that’s not the same as playing as a team and you could probably see in the first half that we lacked the cohesion that Gloucester had, that the ‘A’ League teams may have because they play together regularly.
“I suppose we were feeling our way into the game that first 20 minutes, by which time we’ve already cost ourselves too many points and we have to climb right back up the mountain just to get ourselves to anything like equal terms.
“That’s something we need to work on before we go to Bath, starting games with a bang and making sure we are ready to fire from the first whistle. Hopefully with this game behind us we can take that learning into Saturday.”
Despite the defeat, Spratt insisted that there was a lot to be pleased about as a team with seven starters aged 21 and under showed plenty of resolve and no little flair to make a real contest of it in difficult circumstances. He said:
“We won’t get too down about it as there are plenty of positives we can take out of it. The way we rallied in adversity, going down to 14 and then 13 men, but we rolled our sleeves up and dug in, scoring some very nice tries to bring us back into the game. We had the momentum at the end but the final whistle came too early for us, if we had gone another five minutes I think we could have sneaked it.
“We suffered a lot of injuries which didn’t help, and we adapted well to the changes. There were a lot of young boys getting some good experience out there, discovering what it’s like to play at this level and they’ll learn from this.
“That’s what games like this are all about. Coming to places like Kingsholm, which is difficult venue to get a result at any time, and to put the performance in that we did in the second half, scoring the tries we did, is a huge positive that the youngsters can take a lot of confidence from.
“Saying that though, ultimately, we want to be winning these games. We are never happy losing any game. It’s no easy task going away to the Rec to play Bath next weekend, but we’ll have to look to put this behind us, take the positives and learn from the negatives, and hope to improve on this in terms of performance and result.”