Peel urges players to ‘enjoy the fight’ ahead of Zebre clash

Rob LloydNews

Dwayne Peel has urged his side to “enjoy the fight” as they look to claim their first win of the BKT United Rugby Championship campaign at home to Zebre Parma on Saturday night (19:35).

Speaking after last weekend’s disappointing 16-10 defeat to Cardiff in Llanelli, head coach Peel said: “We had a lot of territory and possession and didn’t convert, that is the bottom line. In fairness to Cardiff, they squeezed us in that area, turned us over in their 22 so we couldn’t convert pressure into points. We had a couple of opportunities and we didn’t cross the line.

“We’re in a bit of a hole, that is the truth of it, but only we can fight out of it. There are three home games to go in this block, we have to relish the fight of getting out of this situation, we don’t want to be here, but it is where it is, the reality is we have to be better.”

On the challenge of Zebre, who have pushed some of the competition’s big guns Leinster and DHL Stormers in their opening matches, Peel added:  “Zebre have squeezed every team, put pressure on every team, it is going to be another difficult game. They are going to come here knowing we are hurting and trying to take a scalp. We have to make sure we are ready for that.

“We picked up a couple of injuries against Cardiff and with Vaea’s red we are going to be stretched, it is about getting the boys fresh and ready to go.”

Peel added: “We have to give licence to the boys to go out there and let rip, we had a couple of opportunities to finish tries off at the edge against Cardiff which we didn’t take and only a couple of weeks ago we finished off a couple of nice tries on the edge. There is obviously a bit of nervous tension there, it is up to me and the rest of the staff to try and alleviate it. We are where we are, we need to fight and enjoy fighting and play with freedom because we need to have that freedom to play.”