Dai Young has admitted his frustration at seeing Cardiff Blues go down to a 16-9 Magners League defeat at the hands of Munster.
The Blues led 6-3 at the interval and enjoyed a promising start to the second-half. They had looked like they could secure a first ever win at Thomond Park but were punished for failing to take their opportunities.
Young was disappointed to see his side surrender their lead, but pleased to see them run Munster so close. The Cardiff Blues head coach feels his side are turning the corner after an inconsistent period and are moving in the right direction going into the Heineken Cup before crunch Christmas encounters with Newport Gwent Dragons and Ospreys.
"We are totally glad we have had that preparation and we are definitely going in the right direction," said Young.
"We’re very pleased to come away from somewhere like Thomond Park with a useful bonus-point. But we’re frustrated because we could have won it.
"We matched them in every department and played more rugby but they showed why they’re previous champions and that’s something we’re striving for.
"Whenever they get a sniff they come away with something. They had one chance and nailed it while we had four and didn’t take them. That was the only difference on the day.
"We had a hell of a go at them and it was a bit of a missed opportunity in the end; so it’s a little bit frustrating.
"But it’s very hard to be critical of the players. I was proud of the performance. We muscled up in defence and were as physical as them.
"We outplayed them at times, got on the outside of them and created opportunities. The set-piece was good as well. It was the perfect preparation for next weekend. It doesn’t get tougher than Munster away from home."