Friday, 2 May 2014

Scarlets delighted to seal place in Rugby Champions Cup

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FORWARDS coach Danny Wilson has stressed the significance of the Scarlets sealing their place in top-level European competition for next season.

The West Wales region ensured they will be playing alongside the likes of Toulon, Clermont and Leinster in the new Rugby Champions Cup in 2014-15 thanks to a 34-23 bonus-point win over the Dragons at Parc y Scarlets on Friday night.

“It was important that we cemented that sixth place and it was important we produced a performance in the style we did,” said Wilson.

“We have been disappointed with elements of our performance recently, especially in that first half against a good Blues side (on Judgement Day), and it was important we bounced back like we did.

“Being in the top competition in Europe is huge. It is financially important and it is the main competition that everyone wants to be in. The Scarlets have been in it for many years now and it is important we are in it again.”

The Scarlets’ victory stemmed from a dominant forward platform, particularly in the scrum.

The home side threatened to run away with it with tries from lock Jake Ball, scrum-half Gareth Davies and wing Jordan Williams pushing them into a 24-3 lead midway through the first half, but the Dragons refused to buckle, with a brace of tries from wing Tom Prydie keeping them in the contest.

“The Dragons stuck in there to the end and scored a couple of good tries and showed what they are good at and how dangerous they could be, but for the majority of the match I thought we were dominant in a lot of areas of the game,” added Wilson.

Wilson also praised the performance of man of the match Josh Turnbull, who he believes is pressing for a place on Wales’s tour of South Africa this summer.

“Josh was outstanding, his workate is phenomenal and he has shown that all season for me,” he added. “You saw him late in the game chasing back and defending.

“I was pleased for him and hopefully he has put his hand up and caused the national staff a bit of a headache.

“He has certainly got that versatility having shown he can play, six, seven or eight for us and I believe he is getting better and better.

“He knows there are elements of his game he can work on, but for me, his workrate is second to none. He will run all day for you, which is a great attribute to have.”

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Scarlets delighted to seal place in Rugby Champions Cup

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