O’Shea hopeful after defeat

Date published: December 27 2014

Harlequins boss Conor O’Shea believes his side have turned a corner, despite losing to Northampton Saints.

Stephen Myler’s boot proved decisive in the Big Game at Twickenham, as Quins fell to a sixth Premiership loss.

O’Shea though remained optimistic about the season ahead.

“There is a huge amount of frustration as we didn’t get the breaks. There are loads we have to work on but very little went our way. We gave away a couple of needless penalties and the charge down just after time, which saw them score was crucial.” said O’Shea.

“If we play like that we will beat a lot of sides. I’m happier with that performance as it’s a step forward and I believe we’ve turned a corner.

Northampton boss Jim Mallinder paid tribute to the way Quins pressured the Premiership champions throughout.

“We were put under a lot of pressure as Quins played really well,” said Mallinder.

“They kept their patience and caused us problems when they moved the ball wide but I didn’t think we defended particularly well.”

Mallinder also picked out the Man of the Match performance of Samu Manoa, who he revealed had been struck down by a virus before the game, while also being aware of the threat from Bath in the battle for top spot.

“It was a remarkable performance from him and it was a massive boost to us for him to play the full 80 minutes. He’s had a virus and has been in bed for the last 24 hours,” stated Mallinder.

“Bath are playing really well but we are only halfway through the season. However we are where we want to be as it is important that we finish in the top two.”