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Davies relieved to get Aironi test out of the way

Guinness PRO12 Editor

5 Sep 2011

Scarlets' Andy Fenby is stopped in his tracks by Gabriel Pizarro

Head coach Nigel Davies admitted his relief that Scarlets dealt with the pressure of Sunday’s RaboDirect Pro12 opener and vowed to use the victory over Aironi to build momentum.



The Welsh side overcame the Italians’ challenge at the Parc y Scarlets relatively comfortably, with Rhys Thomas and Andy Fenby’s second-half tries to seal the convincing 32-9 win.

In a closely-fought first-half in difficult conditions, Scarlets battled to lead 9-6 at the interval but Scarlets’ superiority showed after the break and Davies’ men wore down Aironi.

Fly-half Dan Newton scored 19 points from his boot, and his impressive efforts prompted special praise from Davies who believed his side coped well with tricky circumstances.

“With the pressure on, I thought we did well,” said Davies.

“The opening game of the season is always a pressure one, particularly at home and with a win, we can move forward with a certain amount of momentum.

“Those weren't conditions where you could pass the ball and we probably put too much pressure on ourselves early doors.

“I am happy with that, it was going to be a tricky encounter against a very physical side in very difficult conditions and we knew we had to physically man-up.

“The positive thing was the boys were able to adapt our game to the conditions.

“There were some good individual performances – I was pleased to see Dan Newton have a good day with the boot.

“I thought he controlled the game well and we all know how important a high percentage kicking success rate is.”