Head Coach Preview | Scarlets
Head Coach Richard Cockerill believes his side should relish the opportunity to finish the season on a high as Edinburgh embark on ‘three huge games’ in the hunt for play-off rugby.
Sitting in fourth place in Conference B, the capital side face fifth place Scarlets at Parc y Scarlets this Saturday (6 April, kick-off 6.45pm – live on Premier Sports 2) with just two points separating the two sides.
Edinburgh secured a bonus-point win over the Welsh outfit at BT Murrayfield back in November, but with returning Test players on both sides, this weekend’s bout will prove to be a different battle altogether.
“I think both teams will be different than when we faced each other in November,” said Cockerill. “They obviously had a disappointing result against Cardiff Blues, but they had a lot of guys missing and they had Test guys coming back in off the bench.
“They will have had a bit of time to recover, a couple of training weeks to get right and they will have a fully fit squad to select from.
“They’ve got a lot of that Welsh team coming back in – especially in that backline and in the front row. So, we expect a very tough game and whoever wins it will either stay above or jump above the other. It’s going to be a very tough contest.”
With only three league games remaining and four sides in the hunt for the remaining two play-off places, the capital side can near afford any slip-ups with so much on the line.
A top-three position in Conference B would yet again secure Heineken Champions Cup rugby for next season – a competition that Cockerill believes his side need to be in to continue their development.
“We’ve got three massive games, starting at Scarlets at the weekend. Ulster here, a week off and then we go to Glasgow. Three big games, three big names - but as you saw at the weekend – if we play to our level then we can certainly win.
“We want to be back in the Champions Cup and we want to qualify by right. But if we’re not, we’re a club that’s building and we’ve got keep developing and we just keep improving year on year. We’ve just got to keep on getting better and that’s the key.
“They’re all exciting games and even more so if you win them. We’ve got to test ourselves. Nothing has changed from the start of the year. We’ve played in some big game that we’ve won.
“We’ve dropped short at the weekend and now we’ve got three huge games. If we win them all, we’ll probably finish in the top-three, we’re in the play-offs and we’re in to Europe. If we drop one of those, we’re going to have to rely on other people.