DFP Header Area

Jones: we have been our own worst enemy

Guinness PRO12 Editor

19 Sep 2012


Ospreys skipper Alun Wyn Jones insists his side must cut out the silly mistakes if they are to bounce back from their disappointing start to the defence of their RaboDirect PRO12 title.

Going into this Friday’s Welsh derby with the Scarlets Ospreys have lost all three of their matches so far and currently sit second from bottom in the table.

The Liberty Stadium outfit were beaten away to Treviso in the season’s curtain raiser before home defeats to Ulster and Glasgow.

And with a trip to Parc y Scarlets up next to take on Simon Easterby’s in-form Scarlets things do not get much easier for the slumping Ospreys.

But Welsh lock Jones believes his side have not helped themselves so far in their quest to become the first-ever side to retain the Celtic League title.

“We are beating ourselves, it's not the 15 guys on the other side,” insisted Jones.

“In the Ulster game there were 23 turnovers, and 13 were unforced. We are dropping the ball, we are knocking it on. When we cut those out we will have a lot more possession.

“We had the lion's share of territory against Glasgow. We spent eight minutes in their 22 and we didn't really convert that into points.

“At home to Glasgow with 45-50 minutes on the clock we were 18-0 down. It was a case of us not holding onto the ball.

“We managed to get a late surge but the breakdown is the biggest area for us at the moment. Our set-pieces didn't go well and there's plenty to work on.

“Frustration is the biggest thing. It's not a case of the boys not trying, it's probably a case of trying too hard. We are not doing ourselves justice.

“We are well aware of that and the fans deserve more. We are not helping ourselves at the moment. We will get straight back on the horse and give it a go.”

Ospreys will face a Scarlets side who top the table after wins against Leinster, Glasgow and Connacht, and are unbeaten at Parc y Scarlets in their last ten RaboDirect PRO12 games.

But despite that ominous statistic, Jones believes that being classed as underdogs may help them rediscover their form in an early meeting with their rivals from Llanelli.

“It's probably good for us to be underdogs to be honest,” he said. “It could be the tonic to put us back on track and where we need to be.

“You look at their backline. They can almost start with an international backline now and the forward pack – they have recruited well.

“They will be baying for blood from the west and you can't blame them – it's a derby.”