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Mulvihill disappointed with last-gasp defeat.

Blues News | 23rd November 2019


John Mulvihill rued Cardiff Blues’ game management and rate of turnovers after they suffered heartbreak at the death in the European Challenge Cup.

Wales’ Capital Region led 11-8 at half-time, having dominated for large periods, but were unable to pull away from Leicester Tigers, who slotted two penalties, including the injury-time winner.

Mulvihill believes neither side deserved to win following a frustrating evening at the Arms Park but he also felt the draw was the fair result.

He said: “I thought we played some really good rugby at times but then lacked a bit of control in the finer points and areas of the game and certainly didn’t play in the right areas, which you could see towards then end.

“We had an opportunity to roll the ball out but kept playing and it’s disappointing that we won most facets of the game but the scoreboard at the end and it’s our own fault.

“We got into their 22 and we just weren’t patient. We tried to score off the first play, Will Boyde carried well, Turnbull came round the corner and we just have to stay on the try-line. If the forwards have 10 pick and goes and get over the try-line then that’ great but we went out the back a bit quick and Aled was taken into touch by some pretty desperate defence.

“It’s a little bit of game management and the amount of ball we turned over. We turned over the ball 19 times today, which is by far the highest in 18 months.

“There were seven in the first-half with 65 per cent possession and 46 per cent territory so even though we turned the ball over we were playing in the right areas and were in control. In the second half we turned it over 12 times and had 71 possession but only played right area 39 per cent of time and we paid for it in the end.

“We dropped four points because we didn’t win but we were lucky to be 11 all on the final whistle. We took a point out of it which I guess is a positive but in my heart of hearts it should have been a draw. Neither team deserved to lose.

“We have a long way to go in the comp, we’ve got six points from two games and now need to win again away from home.”

The Blues are next in action away to Benetton Rugby in the Guinness PRO14 next weekend before returning to Challenge Cup action against Pau.

They face the French outfit first at the Arms Park on December 7, and will need to triumph to realistically remain in the battle for a knockout spot.