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Lahiff confident Bath Rugby will come good

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Two defeats from their first three games is not the start to the Aviva Premiership Rugby campaign that Bath Rugby were looking for.

But prop Max Lahiff insists there is no panic in the West Country as last year’s runners up look to right their wrongs against London Irish this weekend.

A 38-28 loss at the Rec to Harlequins last time out would have hurt Mike Ford and his troops – ill-discipline saw them give away 16 penalties as Nick Evans racked up a personal haul of 28 points.

And considering they had to fight hard to see of Exeter Chiefs in their season opener before being bullied out of it in the rain at the Ricoh by Wasps and there are certainly some question marks floating around Farleigh House.

Throw in the ongoing conjecture about Sam Burgess’ future and it would be easy to start raising eyebrows but Lahiff is adamant that – despite their suicidal showing against Quins – all is well.

“It’s always going to be tough to a win a game when you give away 16 penalties,” he said. 

“This league is so competitive, it’s hard at the best of times and if your discipline is that awful, you are only making it harder.

“The first ten minutes of the second half were suicidal – I thought we had dominated until then to be honest.

“No-one is freaking out about it, it’s more just about learning from it and righting the wrongs this weekend against Irish.

“We need to have a bit more patience and be a bit less anxious in defence and let it come to us rather than trying too much – that is where the penalties come from.

“It’s been difficult at the start of this season but there have been a number of factors – not least that we have played three very good teams that will all be challenging for the top four.

“And when you look at the season we had last year, getting all the way to the final – teams prepare for us well.

“The two losses we have had were both tight, it could have been a lot better and obviously we were hoping it would be a lot better.

“But it’s a long season and we are only three games in, there is plenty of time for us to get back in.”

While Bath struggled against Quins on Saturday – Lahiff impressed in his first start of the season in the front row.

The former Melbourne Rebel lined up at loosehead and made a couple of big carries for the Blue Black and White, and he admits he is now equally comfortable at tighthead.

“It was awesome fun to be out there from the start, I really enjoyed hitting some bodies, dominating one or two defenders,” he added. 

“That was fun – it is good to feel like I am in some form again and now it is about trying to nail down a starting spot for when the big games in the big competitions come along.

“Starting games is where I want to get to, the coaches have told me that they like my impact coming off the bench.

“I enjoy both loosehead and tighthead, the difference between the two is a good challenge and one that I enjoy.
Tighthead is more about maintain the shape and being the foundation, loosehead is more about disrupting.

“I used to definitely prefer loosehead, tighthead I told people I could play it and then it was just a case of fake it until you make it. I got my backside kicked a few times but now I am confident.” 

To see all of the 2015-16 Aviva Premiership Rugby season fixtures, please click here #AvivaPrem
 

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