Sean Holley paid tribute to the young Ospreys after they recorded an emphatic victory over Glasgow at the Liberty Stadium tonight to cement their spot in second place of the Magners League.
The Ospreys ran in five tries on their way to a convincing 37-6 win, and despite a first-half hiccup, Head Coach Holley said that the coaching team were pleased with the performance as a whole.
“Overall, we’ll take that I think” he said.
“There’s elements of the performance we weren’t happy with. At half-time we were annoyed that we’d perhaps lost our shape a little bit, perhaps tried to win it from our own half. That was probably a result of youthful exuberance and scoring too early.
“In the end, we’ve knuckled down and got the win we wanted. It rounds off a good block of games for us, so we’ll take that. This win equals an Ospreys record, which is great, it’s just a shame that we’ve got three weeks off now, we just want to play. The form of the team has been excellent, they’ve been extremely diligent and hard working, and they’ve stepped up to the plate when they needed to.
“We’ve said to this group that if we didn’t do well at this period then there wouldn’t be much to play for at the end, and now, we’re in a strong position. We’re really satisfied. We can see the youth continuing to come through, and the level of ability on them. They are out there, gaining in belief and confidence, and you can see that. It’s a really happy place to be at the moment.
“Some young players burst on the scene, like Hooky and Alun Wyn, and others just burn away slowly, they get a little bit more of a taste for it, a little more confidence and then, boom, away they come. Ashley Beck is one of those. He’s a quiet, unassuming guy, but now he’s becoming a man, and that was a man’s performance tonight wasn't it.
“Everyone loves Adam, I think that the genuine rugby supporter knows how important tight-head is, and it’s great to see him coming back. I’ve got to say that the scrum was pretty strong before Adam came on. Cai’s development, another slow burner, has been fabulous, and don’t underestimate the hooker's role in that as well. But, yes, it’s great to have Adam back. He’s worked really hard, he’s been great around the environment, working around scrum sessions with the younger boys and analysing the opposition, he’s a pleasure to have around.
“A big goal of ours at the start of the season was to be the first team to successfully defend the Magners League title. We talked a lot to the players about it, we do take it very seriously. Clearly, European rugby comes to the fore at certain times, you have to concentrate on that, but in the long game, it’s about this title isn’t it? I think it’s a fantastic tournament, the Italians have added something, and you do have to show your strength in depth and go to places to get a result.
“The goal has been to make top four, and maybe, if we can go to Edinburgh and get something, we can reassess our goals. There are a lot of tough games still, we’ve got to play Munster, we’ve got to play the Blues, we’ve got to go to the Dragons, which isn’t a happy hunting ground for us, and neither is Edinburgh really. We are under no illusions, and we are not taking anything for granted.
“It’s up to us now to get the balance right when the internationals come back in a few weeks. One thing is for sure, we’ve taken huge notice of the performances of late. Even think back to our performance in Leinster at the start of the year, we didn’t quite win but it was a good performance, we played very, very well that night. It’s our job to get that balance right, and maybe we don’t get it right every time, but certainly, we’ve got a lot more chocolates in the box now.”
Speaking about the injury suffered by Tom Prydie during the second half, Holley added:
“Tom tried to take the man on, he got tackled, and it looks like there’s some ligament damage there. There was maybe a twist. We’ll have it scanned but it doesn’t look too good, he’s on crutches. I’ve told him to keep his chin up, he’s still young so whatever the results of the scan, his time will come again. We’ll have an update from the medical team in a day or two.”