RUGBY UNION: Jones sees the bigger picture after defeat

First published in Sport The Oxford Times: Photograph of the Author by , Sports reporter specialising in Rugby, Cricket and Athletics. Call me on 01865 425456

Lyn Jones admitted he had been part of the reason for London Welsh’s late capitulation at home to Newport Gwent Dragons.

But the Exiles’ head coach was happy to accept a heavy defeat in terms of the bigger picture.

“At 14-9 up with 20 minutes to go, we made some substitutions and the structure falls apart,” said Jones.

“It is a little bit of me, but I wanted to ensure everybody got enough air time today.

“We had some boys playing their first game and some coming back from injury after a long time out.

“It is important that they had some game time before Leicester next week.”

Welsh’s focus on the Premiership means they have used the LV= Cup as part of their league preparations rather than seeking success in the competition.

“To get where you want to go, things are going to have to happen,” said Jones.

“It is about giving boys opportunities, making sure that everybody gets on the paddock.

“The same thing happened against Exeter and we lost shape for whatever reason.

“It is a price we were prepared to pay, because what is important is that we get everybody up and running and fit for next week.

“We have got four Premiership games before the LV final.”

Jones added: “We created at least 15 opportunities to score points and you would expect to take at least half of them.

ill have their chances as well.

“When Gwent had the ball, they took their opportunities and deserved the victory.

“We are focused on next Saturday’s fixture with Leicester and today was a good exercise for us to get boys back up to speed.”

Reflecting on Gonzalo Tiesi’s debut, he said: “I was very pleased with Tiesi. We tried to get him into the game as much as we could.

“He was quite correct in his game. It is no fluke that the more players you have who don't make errors, the more successful you are.”

Dragons head coach Darren Edwards said: “It was a pretty borimg game to be honest.

“What’s the point in playing if you are going to play rugby like that.

“The try against us spurred our boys on. We needed to go up another gear and we did.”

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