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Blues pick up injuries in Dragons win

Guinness PRO12 Editor

24 Apr 2010

Cardiff Blues coach Dai Young is hoping injuries to three of his Welsh internationals in the 20-14 win over Newport Gwent Dragons won’t rule them out of Saturday’s Amlin Challenge Cup semi-final.

The Blues made it five wins in a row as they kept alive their faint hopes of reaching the Magners League Play-Offs with a vital win over their arch-rivals at Rodney Parade.

But their latest triumph came at a cost as they lost British & Irish Lions Jamie Roberts (knee) and Andy Powell (calf) during the game and also saw Wales scrum half Richie Rees limp out of the action with an ankle problem.

The three players will have their injuries closely assessed over the weekend and Young is hopeful they will all recover in time for his side’s Amlin semi-final clash with London Wasps at Adams Park.

Having seen his side knocked out of the Heineken Cup semi-finals in the cruelest of fashions last season, when they lost to Leicester Tigers in a penalty shoot out, Young is hoping to steer his side into their first European final since 1996.
And rather than dwell on the injuries, Young preferred to talk about the confidence in his squad following their latest triumph.

“It was great preparation for us because it’s not going to get any more physical than that against the Dragons. We know Wasps will present a massive challenge and they have a real habit of performing when it really matters at the right time of the season,” said Young.

“They are no strangers to semi-finals and turning up on the day and performing. We know we are going to have to be at our best.

“It’s important for us to go in with confidence, to be looking forward to the challenge. We are winning, so we are moving in the right direction.”

If other results go their way then the Blues could find themselves playing for a top four finish, and a place in the Magners League Play-Off semi-finals, the weekend after their Amlin Challenge Cup clash with Wasps. Having taken four more points in Newport they could creep in by beating Munster in their final league game at the Cardiff City Stadium.

“If we can win our last game and we are lucky enough to get there, great. But it’s a long shot, because it’s pretty much out of our hands,” admitted Young.

“We have got to rely on people that are in front of us to lose. The most important thing for us was coming here to Newport and winning.

“We are a real proud bunch and we wanted to come to Newport and win. I was really pleased with the way the guys fronted-up in the second half, because it was a real tough encounter.”