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Elwood blames kickers for Leinster defeat

Guinness PRO12 Editor

2 Jan 2012

Connacht director of coaching Eric Elwood blasted his kickers after his side succumbed to their eighth successive defeat in the RaboDirect PRO12 – this time at the hands of rivals Leinster.

While opposing fly-half Isa Nacewa slotted away five penalties from five in the New Year’s Day clash, Matthew Jarvis missed three kicks from four as Connacht lost 15-13 despite scoring two tries from Tiernan O’Halloran and Ethienne Reynecke.

Replacement fly-half Miah Nikora couldn’t fare any better, missing the decisive conversion from Reynecke and coming up short with a drop goal in the dying minutes.

Elwood, whose side face Aironi on Saturday in the RaboDirect PRO12, couldn’t hide his frustration but called on his troops to respond against the Italians and end their dismal run.

“We couldn't buy a kick. The kickers don't need me to tell them,” said Elwood.

“We've had a chat, they know that. If one of those kicks goes over, it wins you a very important game and gives us the lift we were looking for.

"Obviously it's another disappointed dressing-room. Leinster are the European champions and we outscored them two tries to nil.

“It's a good performance, a great effort, good crowd participation and a great night but we've nothing to show for it. It's disappointing.

"We knew we needed to step up from last week and we did that. If we can take this on next week, that's the consistency we'll be looking for against Aironi.

"If we can stay at this level of performance, intensity and even maybe a step further, who knows? But we can't drop our levels."