Jebb Sinclair admits London Irish had their very own video nasty after their Aviva Premiership Rugby defeat to Exeter Chiefs last weekend.
But the Canadian insists that optimism remains high with the Exiles – despite kicking off their campaign with back-to-back defeats.
After running Leicester Tigers close in their season curtain raiser, Irish were put to the sword 38-11 at Sandy Park last time out – in a game that saw them only have 14 per cent of possession over the whole game.
That loss means that – at this admittedly early stage of the season – Sinclair and co are bottom of the table.
But the 29-year-old, who appeared in three of Canada’s World Cup games, is adamant that the new era under Kiwi head coach Tom Coventry is just getting started after they reviewed the tape of their loss at Sandy Park.
“It was not so much the loss that hurt, it was the manner of it,” he said.
“Losses are going to happen in this league, but being outplayed is something we are really unhappy with.
“Exeter obviously have a quality team but we let them get a rumble on in mauls, we were not strong enough, we didn’t match their intensity.
“On the video we have obviously seen the errors, those are going to happen at this point in the season, but a lot of it came down to who wanted it more. There are no excuses, and we have to use this as motivation.
“Tom (Coventry) has brought an intensity, there is no hiding away. If you had a bad day you will know about it, that’s not about guys getting ragged on our targets, it’s about seeing how we can fix it and build as a team.
“We had a pretty honest session, it was something that we needed and in a game like that there were 23 players whose hands went up, it was not good enough.
“He wants us to play a more physical game, there is more detail as well with nothing left up to chance.”
Coventry arrived at the Exiles with an impressive CV, he was part of the coaching staff at the Chiefs who won back-to-back Super Rugby titles in 2012 and 2013.
And while the start to Irish’s season has left a little to be desired – Sinclair is confident that the changes will yield rewards before too long.
“Has this dampened enthusiasm? Not at all, this is a marathon not a sprint. It has not been a good start, we have been slow out of the gate but it’s nothing to worry about,” he added.
“We are all excited and optimistic about where we are going and what we can do. There have been parts of our system that have looked really sharp, our training intensity has gone right up and we need to keep that going.
“We never look over our shoulder, we want to catch the big guys ahead, to be playing in the top tier of Europe- at the highest level we can.
“We know that if we start clicking we can get there.”
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