Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 20 September 2014

Rory Best: Let’s get used to winning feeling

Captain Rory Best begins a series of diaries by Ulster players ahead of Saturday’s big Heineken Cup clash

Rory Best believes Ulster have nothing to fear against Stade Francais at Ravenhill on Saturday

It was a real relief to finally get a win under our belts against Edinburgh on Friday, after narrowly missing out against both Cardiff and the Dragons.

The attitude of the whole team was lifted and there was a real intensity in the celebrations, as everyone really played their hearts out for the win.

Edinburgh did not give in easily, and it was a tense match to the end.

There was a great atmosphere in the changing rooms after the game, not only because of the win but we were saying goodbye to one of our coaches, Phil Morrow, who has been with the team for years.

It was great to get the win for both Phil on his last night and all our supporters that keep cheering us on each week.

You could tell that the boys had really stepped it up a gear, as everyone was truly exhausted, but delighted.

Saturday morning it was back to Le Mon for recovery with the rest of the boys, and we chatted over the game, how it went and what we need to improve.

The attitude in camp is very positive, everyone understands we have a huge challenge ahead both in the Magners League and the Heineken Cup.

The team are ready to put in the performances needed and hopefully the points will follow.

After my recovery session, I headed down to my local rugby club Banbridge, to watch them take on Rainey in the All Ireland League.

Sunday was spent helping my dad out and catching up with the family, a day for relaxing.

Today the squad will train together on the pitch in the morning, going through set pieces and working on individual skills.

We need to ensure we have a very tight performance on Saturday against Stade, and don’t give away penalties or possession.

After lunch we then break into our different weights groups, and have our one to ones with the coaches, who analyse our past performances and talk through any issues we have.

Saturday’s game will be a tough one though.

Stade Francais are one of the top teams in Europe sitting top of the French league, and are favourites I’m sure, not only for our group but to lift the Cup.

I respect them as a team, but I am not afraid of them.

Ulster has a great record against Stade at Ravenhill, and the team will be hoping to make it five out of five wins come Saturday.

Hopefully we will have a full Ravenhill crowd cheering us on, as when Ravenhill is full, it can be an intimidating place for the opposition team to play in.

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