Ospreys excite milestone man Biggar

Date published: December 30 2016

After becoming the first player to score 2,000 points in regional rugby, fly-half Dan Biggar now wants to lift trophies with the Ospreys.

The 27-year-old passed the significant landmark when he slotted over his fifth and final successful kick in Tuesday’s derby win over the Scarlets, taking his overall Ospreys tally to 2,001 points. Putting that into context, James Hook is second on the chart, on 796 points.

Reflecting on the achievement as he took time out from training the morning after the Scarlets win, where the players spent time in the pool before reviewing their performance, he insisted that, while proud of reaching 2,000 points, it wasn’t something he was overly enjoying.

“It’s a nice achievement and one that I can be proud of, obviously, but it’s not something to dwell on,” said Wales international Biggar.

“It’s nice to get it in a big game as well, a derby against the Scarlets, helping us to an important win. Hopefully, there are plenty more points to come.

“What’s been the most pleasing, in my view, is that 2,000 points have at times, been important in the Ospreys winning leagues, winning finals, particularly in the early days.

“That gives the points some meaning, it’s not just accumulating points for the sake of it, it’s helped us do something as a team.”

After picking up league titles with play-off wins over Leinster in Dublin in 2010 and 2012, the latter game seeing Biggar kicking the winning points to cap a remarkable late comeback, the Ospreys have endured their longest fallow period in their short history.

With the fifth anniversary of that memorable day at the RDS looming large this spring, Biggar genuinely believes that his home region are heading in the right direction.

“Anyone who has a long career in professional sport, not just rugby, will experience many highs and lows. We’ve had some great moments as Ospreys and I’d been part of a squad that had won the league twice by the time I was 22,” he said.

“These things go in cycles and we’ve experienced some tough times as well. We’ve been on the end of some heartbreaking defeats and suffered some tough seasons but you have to go through those moments to get to the other side.

“We haven’t achieved anything yet this season, there’s a long way to go in all competitions, but what seems to be a big difference this year is the depth we are starting to develop as a squad.

“We’ve had to go through some pain but I think people can now see the light at the end of the tunnel so to speak. People are coming in and out of the team seamlessly, and the competition makes for a good environment.”

With one derby win in the bag, there is another one for the Ospreys this weekend as they head east on New Year’s Day to face the Dragons. Biggar says it’s important the Ospreys follow the Scarlets win with a similar outcome at Rodney Parade.

“I said after the game on Tuesday that if we go up to Newport and slip up against the Dragons then the hard work against the Scarlets is wasted,” he continued.

“We dug in well and then controlled the game in the second half. To slip up this weekend would be disappointing.

“It is one game at a time. The Six Nations is only around the corner and we know how that impacts us in terms of call-ups, and it’ll be up to the core squad to carry us through that period. What we are seeing is that core is getting stronger which will only benefit us.

“We can’t get too far ahead of ourselves though, at the moment it is just one game at a time, and about keeping that momentum going, in the league and in European competition.”

On that landmark points total, Biggar added: “It’s always nice to achieve something, to get records like that, I suppose, but I’ll go back to what I said at the start.

“What we’ve got here at the minute is a group of players who aren’t individuals, me included, who aren’t particularly fussed on landmarks.

“Yes, they are landmarks but what’s more pleasing is we are all playing as a team. The milestones that myself and other people are getting are helping the team and that’s the main thing. Hopefully, if I’m hitting those landmarks in means we are having a successful end of season.”