Beaumont stresses Bristol clash as a must win

Date published: December 29 2016

Josh Beaumont has said he and his teammates owe their a big performance ahead of their clash against Bristol.

Beaumont came off the bench at half-time in the side’s defeat against Northampton, but Sharks lost and it now means it’s seven defeats on the trot in all competitions for Steve Diamond’s men.

Speaking ahead of the fixture, the number eight said: “The mood in the camp is upbeat. We’re obviously coming into the game off a bad run of form, but there’s no better opportunity to put it right than on Sunday. We’ve had some tough fixtures, and in the last two week’s, we’ve made the right steps in our performance. We’ve got to keep working hard and stay together. It’ll be a tough game on Sunday but we’ll be flying out the blocks,” Beaumont told the Sale Sharks website.

This is Beaumont’s first season as captain, and he admitted it’s not been the ideal start for him: “As a captain, you envisage winning more games than losing! It’s been a challenge but I knew it would be when I took on the role and it’s something I want to keep working on, and hopefully it doesn’t affect my performance. I’ve got senior lads around me who’ll also help me out, and our main job is to bring the lads together.”

Focusing on the opponents on Sunday, he said: “Bristol have got a bit more confidence after last few weeks, and they play some good rugby, and they showed this against Worcester, when they played with 14 men for the majority of the game. We know they are a nuisance at the breakdown so it’s an area we’ve focussed on. However, we’ve got to concentrate more on ourselves rather than them, but we’re aware of the threats they pose, especially in the back three e.g. Varndell, Woodward, Lemi. We hope to nullify them.

“When we played them away, it felt like a must-win game, but the game on Sunday is a big game for us, especially being at home.”