Watson ready for 'must win' Sharks trip
Get the latest from Hamish Watson as the back-row discusses the Heineken Champions Cup opening round defeat to La Rochelle and looks ahead to Saturday's trip to face Sale Sharks at AJ Bell Stadium.
On taking confidence from the defeat to La Rochelle
“I think we can take confidence. They’re top of the Top 14, a very good side, and we were in the game for the whole 80 minutes. I suppose that’s a consolation but against top teams like that we’ve got to be better.
“It’s really small margins. We made a few small errors that cost us the game. We can take a bit from the game – we defended well with pretty much not touching the ball in the first half. That’s obviously a positive but we’ve got a lot to work on for Sale.
“All three games are must-wins now if we want to stay in the main competition.”
On the club's away day European record and facing the Sharks back-row
“There’s no reason why we can’t extend our good away record in Europe. We’ll take a bit of confidence from Saturday night. We’ve lost by five points and we know we’ve been nowhere near our best. We know we can go to these places and get good results.
“It will be another tough challenge facing Sale. They’ve got a very good team and especially a very good back row. It will be a tough game but all of them are in the Champions Cup, and that’s good for us.
"We’ve got a really good back row as well. We’ll be up for the challenge. We know they’ve got a really good pack so it will be a good test for us.”
On slotting back into the starting XV
“You want to come back and play in massive games like Saturday’s, against a team who are top of the log in their league. It’s a great game to come back and test yourself in – it’s not a small game. I like it that way, going back and having huge games in the Champions Cup.
“I don’t think there was any rustiness, but there were a lot of boys out there who have had to integrate pretty quickly.
“It’s about getting used to the calls again, the systems that different coaches use. I thought we did pretty well bar a few small mistakes which cost you in huge games.”
On playing with more fluidity against Sale Sharks
“I hope there is more fluidity. When we had the ball against La Rochelle we looked really good. We scored a try when we went through the phases and we won penalties.
"The fluidity has to be better. We have to attack better – there were a few opportunities that went astray.
"Hopefully after another week together as a team we’ll be better against Sale.”