Thu, 12 Sept 2019
NEWBURY Blues head coach Paul Archer found plenty of positives, despite his side losing their first game back in the South West Premier.
Blues suffered a 35-24 opening-day defeat at Camborne on Saturday, but they did manage to secure a try-bonus point.
Although they came away without the win, Archer believes his side performed well.
He said: “We played some really good rugby and there were plenty of positives to take away from the game.
“It was a weekend trip for us, so it was a good opportunity to bond as a group, particularly for the new guys who have come into the team.
“We scored some good tries, we were defensively sound for the majority of the game and there were some good performances.”
However, Archer said: “The thing which was disappointing for us was that we gave away too many penalties which enabled them to get a foothold in the game.
“They’re a dangerous team and they have guys all over the pitch who can really play, so when you give them additional time with the ball, you put yourself on the back foot.
“We gave them a lot of territory, particularly late in the second half, which was disappointing because they had their scrum-half [Taron Peacock] sent off.”
Archer was disappointed not to get a losing bonus point, but picking up a try bonus point could be crucial in the long run.
“We were very much in the hunt to get two points out of the game,” he said. “We got the try bonus point, which is good because that was our issue in this league last time.
“But we wanted the losing bonus point as well and I think it would have been a decent return from the day.
“We didn’t look out of place and on another day we could have won the game,” he added.
The Blues head coach was happy to see his squad analyse their own performance after the game had finished.
“They guys were spot-on with their own analysis – they had the clarity of thought on how to fix what went wrong.
“I agreed with what they said and I am taking more positives than anything away from the weekend.”
Blues return to Monks Lane this weekend as they welcome Drybrook in the club’s first home game of the South West Premier campaign.
“We need to make sure that we’re more disciplined in defence,” admitted Archer. “We don’t need to jump offside or give away cheap penalties.
“It is individual decision-making that needs to be sharpened up, but you can understand it because it was the first game of the season.
“As you go up the levels, mistakes get magnified and amplified quite quickly, but overall there is stuff we need to keep on doing rather than fundamentally changing it.”