Blog Banner

Squad remains focused on targets - Turnbull

2nd April 2018

Josh Turnbull insists the Cardiff Blues squad remains focused on their targets, as they head into the business end of the campaign.

The utility forward featured at lock as Wales' Capital Region sealed victory over an in-form Edinburgh side and booked their place in the Challenge Cup semi final, where they will host Pau.

Danny Wilson's side now head to South Africa for two crucial PRO14 fixtures, and the Welsh international is excited by the prospect of competing on both European and domestic fronts.

"As a group we’re very tight and all have our focus on reaching our goals. We’ve targeted wins over the past few games, which have been crucial, and we’ll be doing the same as we travel down to South Africa next week," said Turnbull.

"We feel there is a real opportunity to compete and challenge for silverware in both competitions this year. 

"It’s been a long time since we qualified for a semi final, and now there’s a chance to proceed to an exciting final at Bilbao.

"It’s great to see two teams from Wales in the semi final, and it reflects the fact that we both look to play open, attacking rugby, with a lot of tempo, and we’ve both got solid defence.

"We beat Pau twice last year but we’ll have to look at them closer to the time, because first up we’ve got an important two weeks in South Africa.

"It’s an exciting opportunity to play rugby in a different country over the next fortnight, but it’s also a massive chance to put pressure on Cheetahs in third place in the table."

Turnbull also praised the side for their defensive attitude during the 20-6 quarter final win over Edinburgh, and believes it is another sign of the progress they've made under coaches Richard Hodges and Shaun Edwards.

Turnbull said: "We had to make sure we kept to our gameplan throughout the 80 minutes, because we expected them to kick well, to have strong drives and we had to deal with that and stay patient to win the ball back. 

"We knew we had to be clinical in attack when we had opportunities, and that’s what we managed to do, especially during the first half.

"They brought a good line-speed, which can be difficult to deal with, but the space was there behind their defence and some clever kicks put us on the front foot. 

"This season, we’ve looked at our defence as an opportunity to set up opportunities to attack once we turn possession over. We’ve been strong in that aspect recently, especially on our own line, and we’ve managed to close the attackers’ space down.

"Our attitude in defence has been good over the last few weeks, and that’s not going to change as we head to the final few games of the season."