DFP Header Area

Fussell hopes to provide spark

Guinness PRO12 Editor

12 May 2011


Richard Fussell insists the Ospreys are only one spark away from hitting top form.

The defending Magners League Champions have hit a rough patch in recent weeks and have only won one of their last five games.

But they qualified for the Magners League semi-finals courtesy of a 12-10 win over Aironi and face Munster at Thomond Park on Saturday.

And although the live-wire wing admits the Ospreys have been below par in recent weeks he reckons they are not far from clicking.

"It's been a little bit disjointed in recent weeks but we're just waiting for that spark. It's been tough over the last couple of weeks, trying to get our game going but it just hasn't clicked.

"The important thing is we're in a semi-final. We haven't been playing well but it's important now then we do.

"We need to get back to basics, do the simple things well and build on that. When we click we're a very tough team to beat but we're just waiting for that to happen.

"All it takes is one performance. The regular season doesn't matter now, it's just two games."

Fussell expects a titanic battle at Thomond Park but it is one he cannot wait to throw himself into.

"Anything can happen, you just don't know how pressure will affect people," added Fussell.

"With the passion from the Munster fans, it's such an intense atmosphere.

"Munster are half the Irish side, they have world class players all over the park and we'll have to be at the top of our game playing them.

"It's my first semi-final and I can't wait. We're the previous year's champions and want to back it up.

"It's a one off game. We just need to keep the ball. In the last couple of games we have struggled to keep possession. But when we have done that we look good and have got points on the board."

On a personal level Fussell has been in fine form and he was rewarded with the fans' and coaches' player of the year award at the region's end of season dinner.

He has benefited from his versatility and has taken full advantage of the opportunity to play fullback in the absence of Lee Byrne.

"It was a hell of a shock getting the awards," added Fussell.

"I just love playing rugby, if i'm performing well and people recognise that then it's a bonus.

"I'm loving it back there at 15 and it's been a breath of fresh air for me. I feel I've taken to it really well and won player of the month while I was there.

"On Saturday Ronan (O'Gara) will be running me around. He's a great player and an excellent kicker, he knows that pitch really well. But I'll be trying by best to counter that."