Sale Sharks forward Neil Briggs is urging is team-mates to be more clinical ahead of their visit to Bristol Rugby on Sunday if they want to push into the top six of Aviva Premiership Rugby.
Steve Diamond’s side have had an inconsistent run in the league so far this term, combining two impressive wins over Harlequins and Leicester Tigers with frustrating losses to Bath Rugby and Gloucester Rugby – plus a draw with Worcester Warriors – in recent weeks.
And despite defeats in the European Rugby Champions Cup to Saracens and Toulon, Briggs is adamant his side will not be discouraged by their form, given the strength of those two sides.
But the experienced 31-year-old claims Sharks have not got their rewards in recent weeks for the amount of pressure they have placed on the opposition.
“We’ve had quite a lot of possession and a lot of position, it’s how we can then convert that to points,” he said. “Not necessarily the whole time but it’s just being a bit more clinical and just converting that pressure.”
“More importantly, we’re a team that never lacks effort and work-rate, and it’s something we pride ourselves on.
— Sale Sharks (@SaleSharksRugby) October 28, 2016
“You look around the building, we’re together and we’re a team. All this stuff we pride ourselves on, working hard for each other and we know that if we stick to our plan in how we train and what we do then the majority of the times we’re going to get a performance and that leads to results.
“Bristol have not a had a win so they’re probably due one, so it’s a big thing for us – we don’t want to be that team. We don’t want to be the first ones.
“But then there’s also focusing on us and looking up and forward rather than looking down and back. So you’ve got a mix there and you’ve got to manage it.
“So we won’t be going there too scared because you can’t be. It’s not about Bristol; it’s about how we perform because if we can put our bits right and build pressure on the opposition we back ourselves and our processes.”
There has been a buzz around Sale’s Carrington training base this week as the latest rugby league convert, Josh Charnley, joined up with the side for the first time.
— Sale Sharks (@SaleSharksRugby) October 26, 2016
And while he will not make his debut in Bristol, Briggs revealed that the free-scoring flyer has already fitted into the Sharks squad seamlessly.
He said: “He’s come in and to be fair has been popping in for a few dinners with the boys, and he’s come down to games and watched us so it’s not the first time we’ve seen him.
“But it’s the first time he’s trained full on and he’s good, cracking on, getting straight in the mix and he’s just slotted in nicely. He’s the kind of bloke that will fit this environment.
“If you get the right blokes in with the same mentality, and everyone wants to do the same thing then suddenly the machine starts working, and I think [Josh] is a good bloke and a good person going forward for that.”