Lam keeping Connacht’s hopes grounded as crucial trip to Scarlets looms

Connacht coach Pat Lam insists it is still one game at a time despite the province recording its first four-game winning streak since 2002 with a bonus win against the Dragons.

Lam keeping Connacht’s hopes grounded as crucial trip to Scarlets looms

Connacht return to Wales for the second time in a week, and Lam says his team will need to front up again when they face the Scarlets, a side who sit in the coveted sixth place for European qualification.

“We are in seventh place with a real eye to next week. The Scarlets don’t have many weaknesses, so we head over to Wales needing to have a good week and to be able to impose our game on them,” said Lam yesterday. Dave McSharry, Andrew Browne and Eoghan Masterson are the injury concerns from Sunday’s bonus-point win at over in Rodney Parade. McSharry suffered concussion and was substituted in the first half, replacement Browne has an elbow injury, and Masterson broke his nose. However, good news is flanker Willie Faloon is expected to return this weekend for his club after a lengthy spell on the sidelines.

Lam says Connacht are reaping the rewards for believing in themselves.

“We set ourselves goals in the last three weeks, and it is really all about belief. David can always beat Goliath if he believes, and what we have been doing in training and in each game is about instilling belief. A lot of work has gone on behind the scenes to make this happen.”

Although Lam describes Connacht’s second-half performance against the Dragons as “certainly not our best rugby”, he says it was courageous stuff. Pinned to the collar,

Connacht only conceded one try, when replacement centre Darragh Leader was yellow carded. “I am proud of the guys and I love it when they get the reward. We have set our stall and yes, we have a tough run — Scarlets where we have not won for a long time, and then Ulster and Munster after that — so it really is one game at a time.

However we are in a good place, four wins and seventh place..”

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