Carolan reflective after Sharks defeat

Carolan reflective after Sharks defeat

Glasgow Warriors Attack Coach Nigel Carolan was left to reflect on what might have been following yesterday’s 40-12 defeat in Durban, as the Cell C Sharks pulled away with a powerful second-half performance.

The home side scored four unanswered tries in the final half-hour to pull clear of their visitors, despite Thomas Gordon’s double for the Warriors.

For Carolan – leading the coaching team in South Africa in the absence of Franco Smith –, the frustration stems from not being able to fully execute the game plan in the heat of battle.

“It’s a disappointing result, there’s no getting away from that,” said Carolan.

“We had a plan to move them around, and we only really managed to click into that plan at about the 38 or 39 minute mark.

“We kicked too much across the board, and we knew that there was going to be an onslaught coming when the Sharks emptied the bench.

“The difference was that last week against the Bulls, we’d put four tries in the bank and ourselves in a great position before they turned to the bench. It’s very difficult to chase a game against a side that bring that much power.”

However, Carolan was also quick to identify positives from the clash at King’s Park, with the Warriors having gone toe-to-toe with their hosts for much of the match.

“I thought the mindset and energy were both much improved on where we were against the Ospreys a fortnight ago,” he said.

“Tactically we were a bit off, and that was what made the difference.

“Our set-piece didn’t function and that cost us the momentum on six or seven occasions. We asked questions of their defence when we got that momentum behind us, but you can’t waste that many opportunities at this level.”

A trip to Johannesburg awaits next Saturday, as the Warriors look to finish their South African triple-header on a high against the Emirates Lions.

“We’ll review the game on Monday and take the learning points out of our performance,” said Carolan.

“We’ll also assess where a few boys are in terms of fitness – we’ve had a stomach bug in camp this week, and we obviously saw a few lads go off for various things.

“We’ll dust ourselves down and go again next week though, because we know we’ve got the performance within ourselves to get the right result.”

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