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Will Carpenter

Will Carpenter writes

Posted Wednesday, February 3rd 2021

‘Sharks clash a tough test’ - Lam

Pat Lam says the Bears will face a ‘different type of challenge’ against a Sale Sharks side ‘full of quality’ when Alex Sanderson’s men arrive at Ashton Gate on Friday night (7.45pm KO, BT Sport 1 HD).

Last time out, the Bears ran in seven tries to blow away Bath and strengthen their position at the top of the Gallagher Premiership, but Lam insists there is still room for improvement.

'Character was pleasing'

“The first half (against Bath) was excellent on attack, but at the end of the game, we were disappointed with the second half, because we had the opportunity to score more tries,” he said.

“But what I was really pleased about, on reflection, was the amount of work the boys did on defence. We had to defend a lot more in the second half, so to keep them out, even right at the end when they were hammering away at our line, we could have easily said: ‘oh well, the game is won’ but it was real character to work as a team, stay in system and put their body on the line and keep them out.

“There were a lot of positives, but we’ve focused a lot on what we can do better, and what we’ll need to do better, against a tough Sale team this weekend.”

'World Cup winners'

Sale’s new boss Alex Sanderson kicked off life in the AJ Bell hot seat with victory over Leicester Tigers in round seven, and Lam believes the appointment of the Sharks Director of Rugby will be ‘a massive boost’.

“Dimes (Steve Diamond) talked in the past about the squad he had put together, in terms of less quantity and a lot more quality. You’ve got World Cup winners in there, some world class international players – and obviously, Alex (Sanderson) coming in is a massive boost for them.

“I’ve known Alex from my playing days, he had a tremendously successful time at Saracens and was a big influence there and there’s no doubt he’ll take Sale to another level as well.

“It’s going to be tough, and the beauty about the Premiership is that every game is tough, but every game is different as well, there are different threats and so many world class players in different teams, that’s why I love it and enjoy coaching into it.”


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