Mark Wilson at the Madjeski Stadium.

Falcons need to be on top for 80 minutes says Wilson

Monday 30 March 2015

Mark Wilson cut a disappointed figure following the Falcons match against London Irish last Saturday.

Flanker Mark Wilson is demanding that he and his teammates play at full power for longer to secure more Aviva Premiership Rugby victories after Saturday's frustrating loss to London Irish.

The Exiles grabbed to tries in quick succession in the first 20 minutes on Saturday, arguably against the run of play and in the view of the 25 year old Cumbrian, definitely through Falcons mistakes.

“We were really disappointed. The way in which we started we shot ourselves in the foot, gave them two – arguably three – soft tries and you can’t do that. If we want to start progressing as a team we’ve got to start playing at 100% every week and if there is a slight drop off it’s only got to be a slight drop off, not to switch off as we did.”

“We’ve talked about discipline and that’s not just in terms of penalties but also discipline to play as we play and to stick to our shape, and I think at times we went off the page a bit because we felt under pressure.”

“We’ve got to start creating longer periods of how we play and then I’m sure we’ll start creating victories rather than shooting ourselves in the foot.”

“How many times this year have we given the team a soft start and then had to fight back into it? Against Saracens, Northampton and a few others we’ve done the same thing so we need to learn to be squeaky clean from the start and be really switched on from the first whistle.”

With Irish sitting directly above their opponents in the table, the game promised to be an evenly matched encounter and but for the head start afforded to the hosts, could have easily seen the four points come back to the North East, a situation that particularly frustrated Wilson.

“It was a tough loss to take because during the second half the boys showed a lot of character and really dug deep, but in the end it was a tough day at the office.

“It was more frustrating because all week we’ve been really excited because this is a team that we know we’re just as good as, if not better than. We really believe that we’re a really good team in this league; we just need to nail our opportunities and stop giving teams soft tries.”

With focus now switching to the Quarter Finals of the European Rugby Challenge Cup and an away tie against Exeter, it is a perfect chance to put into practice that discussed eighty minute effort, with a win setting up a semi final away to either Gloucester or Connacht.

“There’s going to be a lot of excitement this week leading into the quarter final and we have to go down to Exeter, really give it our all and believe that we can win.”

The Falcons' European Rugby Challenge Cup Quarter Final will be played at Exeter's Sandy Park this Saturday (ko 8pm), with the match screened live in Kingston Park's new East Stand bar, the Tap & Tackle.

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