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Will Carpenter


Posted Tuesday, April 23rd 2019

Leicester Tigers press in brief: five things we learned

Head coach Pat Lam and prop John Afoa faced the media ahead of Saturday's Gallagher Premiership clash with Leicester Tigers at Welford Road - here's what we learned from this week's press session.

Young guns firing

Pat Lam says his young players will have taken plenty from the last-gasp victory over Saracens at Ashton Gate - and hailed his side for executing a gameplan. 

"The pleasing thing was, you look at some of the young fellas that have come through and been able to experience a win against Saracens for the first time," he said.

"But I think it was more that we had a gameplan and the boys executed it perfectly and got the rewards for it.

"Every point counts and we constantly talk about five points being on offer, to get four off Saracens was a huge win and I suppose a lot of people didn’t expect it."

Building on Saracens

Afoa insists the victory over reigning champions Saracens last time out has given Bristol fresh confidence as they target a strong finish to the campaign.

“It showed that, when you put it all together, we can really compete against top sides.

“At other times this season we’ve been patchy and done things that aren’t in our system but results like beating Saracens is just confirmation that when we get our stuff right and everyone is in the right mindset, we can beat any team in the competition.

Tackling Tigers

Lam says Bristol are prepared for another tough test at Welford Road against a club rich in history and tradition.

"It’s an exciting challenge and it’s a tough challenge," he said.

"We said at the very beginning the respect we have for Leicester and have to have for Leicester – for their history, the players they have and what’s gone before."

Big performance

John Afoa has called for a ‘big performance’ at Welford Road on Saturday.

“With a seven-day build-up, we’ll go up there Friday afternoon, get settled in and then look for a big performance on Saturday.

“They’ve got plenty to play for too. They’re at home, but it will be all about who makes the better decisions when the pressure comes on."

Top six target

Lam says their top six hopes are 'very much alive' heading into the final three games of the season.

"All we can control is our game – from fourth to ninth everyone is close so it comes down to us getting the three wins available, it’ll give us the best chance to get into that top six.

"It’s very much alive."

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