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Smith wants more heading into the New Year

Guinness PRO12 Editor

6 Jan 2012

Treviso might currently find themselves seventh in the RaboDirect PRO12 table just four points off the play-offs but head coach Franco Smith insists they can’t rest on their laurels.

Last year the Italian side made an impressive start to the season racking up six wins by the New Year only to fall away, winning just three more games before the end of the season.

This year they find themselves in a similar position with six wins for and as many defeats ahead of tomorrow’s trip to Munster, and Smith is desperate to ensure history doesn’t repeat itself in the second half of the season.

He said: “Last year in the second half of the season we had a run of eight straight defeats and we really stalled.

“For us the objective is to forget about the table and keep up our intensity.

“We know it will be tough against Munster who are also preparing for two important European games, but the good thing is the pressure is completely off us.

“They are a strong team with a very forward pack with a lot of experience.

“But if we want the national team to get stronger, we need to go to these grounds and feel we can win.

“The game will have the intensity of a test match.”

Treviso come into the game on the back of a reassuring 37-14 win over Aironi which went some way to making up for the surprise 27-13 loss in the reverse fixture the previous week.

And Smith admits his side will have to learn from that defeat if they are to challenge the likes of Munster.
He added: “The result from the first game was disappointing but all teams feel like that at times.

“I’m sure Leinster were the same when they came and lost to us last season.

“Aironi played very well in the first game and we mustn’t play down their performance.

“In the second game though we showed a great response and now we want to keep up that momentum.”