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Connacht Rugby: Eric Elwood comments

Guinness PRO12 Editor

29 Nov 2010

Connacht’s Eric Elwood speaks about the Magners League game against Edinburgh last Friday and looks ahead to the clash with Aironi.

“We’re disappointed we didn’t win the game (against Edinburgh), we had a great start scoring 2 trys and going 10 nil up, and even in the last few minutes of the game we had opportunities to finish it out but we’ll take the positives out of the game. The last couple of times we’ve gone to Murrayfield we’ve taken a bit of a hiding so this really shows how far we’ve come. The guys have really stepped up to the mark, Brian Tuohy, Eoin Griffin, Dermot Murphy, these guys are doing the business and putting their hand up for selection and it’s great to see it”

“To come back from being 21 10 down shows a lot of character from the boys, to come back into bonus point territory allows you to press ahead and go for the win and maybe with a small bit more composure we could have closed out the game”

“”We’re trying to play a bit more expansively and increase the interplay between the forwards and backs and I think we really showed that against Edinburgh last Friday.

“There were some great standout performances in that game, Brian Tuohy really made his mark with two well taken tries, Dylan Rogers came on and had a great game, Ian Keatley did well and gives us a few options in the centre now and Johnny O’Connor had a fantastic game”

“We’ve a few injury concerns, it looks like Eoin Griffin’s broken his finger and if so he’ll be out for approximately 4/6 weeks, Niva Ta’auso (cheek) and Ray Ofisa (eye-socket) are still out, as is Adrian Flavin (thumb). Fionn Carr (leg) is still receiving treatment and though we hope he’ll be ok for the weekend, we’ll have to see how he responds to treatment, there’s a few other knocks, Keith Mattews (back), Darragh Fanning (hamstring), Shane Monahan (ankle), Ezra Taylor (calf) and Ian Keatley (calf) will all be monitored during the week to see how they progress.

“We’re looking forward to taking the momentum from Friday’s game into this week’s clash with Aironi. They’ve struggled to get results in this campaign and will look to the game against us as a means to get their season back on track, so we’re expecting a battle alright, they were 10 nil up after 30 minutes at home to the Scarlets last week so we know they can score points, but we’re confident in our own ability, confident in our own defence and we’ll stick to our gameplan and back ourselves.

“This will be Aironi’s first visit to the Sportsground so we hope there’ll be a big crowd out to welcome them and cheer on Connacht. Having a large home crowd makes a big difference to the lads on the pitch, it gives them an extra boost so hopefully we’ll see a large turnout on Friday night.