Monday 5 December 2016

Wilson backs Cardiff to bounce back after shock Treviso defeat

Published 19/02/2016 | 02:30

Gethin Jenkins has signed a new deal to stay with Cardiff Blues Photo: PA
Gethin Jenkins has signed a new deal to stay with Cardiff Blues Photo: PA

After four consecutive victories, Cardiff Blues were brought crashing back down to earth last weekend when they were beaten in Treviso.

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The Italian side hadn't won a Pro12 game in their previous 20 attempts but they stunned Cardiff, much to the frustration of the Welsh side's head coach Danny Wilson.

Lessons have been learned from the shock defeat but as they look to get back on track, their task doesn't become any easier as they host Leinster tomorrow afternoon.

Cardiff have won just once in their previous 20 meetings with Leo Cullen's side but Wilson is confident that his side can bounce back after last week's setback.

"We've dealt with it and in the future those are the kind of games we have got to win if we want to be in the top four of this league," he said.

Pressure

"We move onto Leinster now and hopefully we will pick up the form we have shown in recent games to put them under pressure and score the tries from the opportunities we create.

"It comes down to our accuracy. I would be worried if we were not creating chances, but we have got to be more composed and finish the opportunities we create.

"We have a series of home games left, more than most, and a reasonably good run in.

"We have tough games and opposition to face, but if we can get on a run like we had been on then we give ourselves an opportunity, if results go our way, to be in with a shout of climbing up.

"We missed an opportunity in Italy and it would have given us a lift and momentum. But I am confident it is something we can rectify."

Cardiff's hand is strengthened by the return of seven Welsh internationals and Wilson is hoping that their winning mentality following the success over Scotland, can inspire the dressing-room.

"It's great to get those guys back to give us some strength in depth in terms of the quality that they bring," he said.

"They come in off the back of a win and a draw (against Ireland) so hopefully they will bring that enthusiasm and belief into our camp.

"We don't have a huge amount of time to prep with them, but they are top end professionals who don't need too long to pick up what we have planned and prepared."

Boost

In another boost to the Welsh side this week, the vastly experienced Wales and Lions prop Gethin Jenkins signed a new contract to remain with the club.

Jenkins, Wales most capped player and the Cardiff Blues captain, put pen to paper on a new deal to remain at BT Sport Cardiff Arms Park until at least 2017.

"Gethin is a vastly experienced prop who demands the highest standards from himself and those around him and has excelled at both regional and international level over the last decade.

"There will be real competition for the loosehead jersey next season. Gethin will also be the ideal role model and mentor for the talented young players within our squad and those coming through our system," Wilson added.

Irish Independent

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