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Piutau plotting a happy New Year with Wasps


Charles Piutau will have enjoyed warmer and drier surroundings during the festive season – but he insists his experience in Aviva Premiership Rugby so far has only whetted the appetite for what’s ahead.

Piutau, who has won 16 caps for the All Blacks, was a marquee signing for Wasps over the summer and reinforced an already star-studded attack.

With former Auckland Blues teammate Frank Halai also joining the ranks, Piutau slotted into a back-line containing England hopefuls Joe Simpson, Elliot Daly and Christian Wade at the Ricoh Arena.

Though Wade is sidelined through injury for now, there is still enough firepower – one would think – to emulate the type of form that has seen Wasps sweep aside Toulon and Leinster in Europe.

But defeat to Sale Sharks last weekend was their third Aviva Premiership Rugby loss on the bounce, and it was a match in which conditions hardly suited the running rugby that as times turns heads Wasps’ way this season.

However Piutau, who has played every single minute in the five Aviva Premiership Rugby games he has played this season, insists slight tweaks here and there are all that is needed. 

“The weather is frustrating but that’s part of rugby, it comes with playing in difficult conditions and it’s all about how well you adapt,” he said.

“It’s been awesome though, I’ve really enjoyed the difference in playing styles and seeing how things are in England.

“A big part of coming here is for the experience and Wasps is a great club with great people, and I’m looking forward to pitching in for the rest of the season.

“Things haven’t gone our way, we’ve made lots of errors as a team and individually and that has cost us in the last couple of weeks.

“If we fix those little things I know we will go a long way to get into better form like we’ve been showing in the European Cup.

“Saracens have led the way in the Aviva Premiership and they’re showing how it’s got to be done.

“But if a few things had gone our way in that game too we could have come out on top, so it’s these little opportunities that we need to turn in our favour.”

Two players that have certainly caught Piutau’s eye are Daly and Simpson, who will be waiting eagerly for news of England coach Eddie Jones’ first Six Nations squad.

And Piutau added: “There’s so much quality around me and Elliot and Joe, I’m sure they are in contention for higher honours because they deserve it.

“It would be nice to get to know them a bit more while I’m here and the talent they bring to the team." 

Boxing Day Sale! Click here to grab a bargain with 20% off tickets to the Aviva Premiership Rugby Final on 28 May at Twickenham. 

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