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Will Carpenter

Will Carpenter writes

Posted Tuesday, December 18th 2018

‘Confidence is high ahead of Sale clash’ - Afoa

John Afoa says Bristol Bears will head to the AJ Bell Stadium full of confidence after wins in both the European Challenge Cup and Premiership Shield completed a successful week for the club.

Jordan Crane’s second-half score fired Bristol to a hard-fought 13-3 win at La Rochelle on Saturday night, before Bristol Bears ‘A’ backed it up with a 30-15 triumph over Gloucester United at Kingsholm on Monday night.

And Afoa is expecting another tough test against Sale Sharks on Saturday afternoon.

“Going to France and holding La Rochelle to three points shows game plan and mentality and that’s what we’re going to need again this weekend,” said Afoa.

“If you look through the Sale team, they’ve got some serious talent there in both the forwards and the backs.

“We need to put them under pressure, stick to what we’re trying to do and put our plan in place.

“Monday to Friday is the most important part – the Saturday is only a small part of the week.

“Going to France and holding La Rochelle to three points shows game plan and mentality and that’s what we’re going to need again this weekend.”

John Afoa

“We’ve had another good week – from the senior squad in La Rochelle to the Shield team last night – and we head into Saturday full of confidence.

“We’ve got a real good understanding of how we want to play, and we have been able to execute that well at the weekends.

“The weeks keep coming and coming and Sale away will be tough, but we get our stuff done during the week, we work hard, and we give ourselves a chance.”

The former All Black prop also highlighted the set-piece as an area of importance this weekend.

“Our set-piece has been reasonably good this year. It’s a massive basic of the game, no matter what level you’re playing at.

“As always, it will be important this weekend and we need to make sure we get the ball, have plenty of it and try and put them under pressure.”

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