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Cattle: I'm shocked. I really don't know what happened.

21 November 2011

  • "I'm still shocked" says Cattle
  • Bristol claw back to take victory at The Memorial Stadium
Pirates' captain Gavin Cattle tries to hand-off Bristol's Iain Grieve

Photo: Brian Tempest

Following his side’s shock defeat to Bristol on Sunday, a game which saw the former Premiership side return from an eighteen point deficit to win 37-33, Pirates’ captain Gavin Cattle spoke of his total dismay at having seen a comfortable winning margin turn into a 4-point loss.

“I’m still shocked, I really don’t know what happened. Obviously Bristol took their chances well and you have to give them credit for that, but we had big lapses of concentration in defence, and perhaps a lack of management a little as well in terms of our field position.

“There is always that tendency to stop playing and tighten up a bit when you’re ahead, and we spoke at half-time about not doing that, but we just lost the ball in crucial areas and even simple things like kick-offs, not striking to the right areas, and playing to their strengths in the driving maul, all gave them a good platform. So there are a lot of lessons to be learnt."

We've got to be better – Cattle

Cattle’s men went in at half-time with a healthy lead, eleven points up on the home side following a dominant display, including a sensational solo effort from Dave Doherty. But as the skipper explains, Bristol took their chances, making the visitors pay for their defensive errors,

“The lineout drive was very good in the first half, but we’ve got to be better and we’ve got to convert these chances” commented Cattle.

“We had opportunities that we should have maximised. I’m pleased with the first half performance, Dave Doherty’s try in particular, so there are positives but conversely, a lot of Bristol’s tries came from massive defensive errors on our parts, although they may see that differently. The only real positive to take out of this at the moment is that it’s only the half-way point in this season and we know what we need to do.

“All the games have been pretty tough. Rotherham, although we were the winners on the day, were a tough side to beat, as were Doncaster. Everybody is causing us problems; it’s just how we deal with them that matters. “

And there’s no let up for the Pirates who now face a mammoth journey north to take on Doncaster Knights at Castle Park on Saturday.