Sven Cronk: Newport must be more ruthless
NEWPORT head coach Sven Cronk is calling on his side to be more clinical against Llanelli this Saturday (kick-off 2.30pm) after their disappointing opening league defeat to Aberavon.
The Black and Ambers opened their Principality Premiership account last weekend with a 21-7 reverse away against the Wizards at the Talbot Athletic Ground.
But although it was far from the ideal start, there were some encouraging signs for the visitors, creating several try-scoring opportunities only to fail to convert them.
Newport will need to get back to winning ways and are set to be boosted for the visit of Llanelli to Rodney Parade by the return of back rower Oliver Griffiths.
The 18-year-old injured his shoulder in the British and Irish Cup play-off defeat to Cross Keys last month but has made a rapid recovery.
Lock Adam Brown, who returned to Newport in the summer after a spell with Aviva Premiership side London Welsh, picked up a bump to his shoulder against Aberavon but it’s hoped he will fit for the weekend.
Cronk is confident his charges can come up trumps this weekend if they cut out their errors and finish off their opportunities.
“We made too many mistakes and gave away far too many penalties against Aberavon which was frustrating, but we are confident as a group,” Cronk said.
“We created lots of try-scoring chances and could have nicked it but, perhaps, that wouldn’t have been a fair reflection of the game.
“We just couldn’t build any momentum after creating five clear cut chances and failing to take them, but we’ll be looking to address that.
“Injury wise, we came through pretty much unscathed against Aberavon and we hope to have Ollie Griffiths with us this weekend, which is a big plus.”
The hosts also look forward to to having back rower Craig Attwell back soon after a hand and wrist injury but he won’t fit in time for the weekend.
Llanelli arrive in the city after suffering a setback in mid-week, losing 20-19 to neighbours Carmarthen Quins following a very bright start to the season.
The Parc y Scarlets qualified for the British and Irish Cup after play-off wins over the Quins and Llandovery before they beat Neath 28-16 at The Gnoll last Saturday in the league.
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