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Worcester Warriors using European break to their advantage, says Sam Lewis

Sam Lewis admits Worcester Warriors may have taken one step forward and two steps back in recent weeks, but the flanker insists the entire squad is determined to put things right during the European break.

Carl Hogg’s side registered their first Aviva Premiership Rugby victory since early October a fortnight ago, beating Harlequins 24-17 to record a vital four points that kept them off the foot of the standings.

But an accomplished performance at Sixways was followed up by conceding seven tries in a 55-19 humbling at Gloucester Rugby.

And while Lewis believes they were bettered all over the park on that day, he is adamant Warriors have put that performance behind them with a return to Challenge Cup action on the horizon.

“We are bitterly disappointed after the Gloucester match,” said the 26-year-old. “Going down to Gloucester we had played well against Quins the week before, but we really weren’t good enough.

“I don’t know what went wrong really. We’re always stronger at home but that’s no excuse. Gloucester are a very strong outfit and they just played a much better game than us.

“They kicked better than us, the competed better than us in the forwards, and their backs looked sharper than ours as well. They pretty much dominated us in all areas.

“Our form is not where it should be at Sixways, but it is better than that. Going down to Kingsholm the crowd was on our back as well so we were really up against it.

“We’ve had a few days to recover now and have put a plan in place for the next few weeks ahead of the European break and we want to put things right.”

It has been a long road to Aviva Premiership Rugby for Lewis, who only played his first match for Worcester since May 2015 back in November, after recovering from a troublesome shoulder injury.

In that time, the Warriors had been promoted and played an entire season in English rugby’s top flight, and now he is back in the thick of it, Lewis is determined not to relinquish his shirt very easily.

He said: “Personally I am just thrilled to be out on the pitch with the boys again. It’s always pretty tough when you’re trying to get back, but that’s behind me now.

“Hopefully I will be involved over the next couple of weeks. I want to keep on playing and keeping my fitness up, and it’s very competitive in the back row here.

“I want to just keep playing well and making the coaches believe that I am the best man for the job.

“We’ll need to match Brive physically. They have a very big pack – they like to maul and scrummage a lot, so if we can win the battle there, hopefully the result will take care of itself.

“We just want to get a bit of form back really. A lot of boys will get a chance this weekend who haven’t played too much in the Aviva Premiership, and they will be looking to put their hands up for those league games.

“Hopefully if we can get some form back on the pitch and then take that into the Aviva Premiership block.”

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