Although we recorded a 38-21 victory over Bedlinog RFC last Saturday, the general consensus within the squad was that the performance wasn't good enough. Standards did drop off during the game but I would like to think that is a rare occurrence for us and we will be looking to put that right against the same opposition this weekend.
You don't often play the same team in consecutive weeks in the league and there will certainly be no secrets between the sides when we line-up against each other at The Rec.
For a team fully submerged in the battle to avoid the drop, Bedlinog came to Pontypool Park and played with an element of freedom. They put together some quality phases of play and if we're completely honest, I think they can consider themselves unlucky not to have secured a try bonus point at the very least.
I was unavailable for selection last weekend due to a niggle picked up against Merthyr in our National Cup semi-final. However, I’m feeling good and will hopefully be back and available this weekend. Despite improvements being possible in almost every facet of our game last weekend, we did score six tries. Those tries took us to 98 in the league this season and it would be nice to reach three figures on Saturday.
With just four games remaining between now and our play-off match, everyone wants to give a good account of themselves when called upon. The play-off game will be the culmination of everything the club has been working towards for the last three seasons and every member of the squad is desperate to be involved. As a result, it also ensures motivation, despite top spot already being secured, won't be an issue.
Due to the intense and physical nature of our games against Bridgend, Cardiff Met and Merthyr, the number of personnel changes against Bedlinog wouldn't have come as a massive surprise. However, I think you will continue to see the squad utilised over the next couple of weeks as everyone is given a chance to stake their claim for a starting jersey ahead of the play-off encounter.
With how our season has been structured this year, it has been easier to stay fresh both mentally and physically. We have enjoyed periods of rest and downtime and I personally feel fresh, relaxed and ready to go.