Belfast Telegraph

Wednesday 17 September 2014

Rugby diary: Paddy Wallace

Ahead of the big Magners League match on Friday night against Connacht, Ulster players will write a diary for the Belfast Telegraph each day. We start with Paddy Wallace.

I had a few days off last week. All the Irish internationals had an enforced rest period after the Six Nations so I spent a few days away with my family.

I had lunch with Paul Steinmetz on Sunday and he said there had been a real physical edge to training last week and the guys had been worked pretty hard.

Everyone is definitely geared up for Connacht at Ravenhill on Friday in the Magners League so it's great to be back with the squad because there is a real buzz leading up to such an important home match.

Our training timetables have changed a bit under new coach Matt Williams.

Yesterday we did our pitch work in the afternoon and our weights training in the morning.

The theory behind that is that the weights will be most beneficial when you are at you freshest.

So after weights we all sat down and did analysis on Connacht before we went out to train.

Doing the video work before the session helps us to know what we are looking to achieve from our session.

We explored Connacht's perceived weaknesses and then our pitch training was all tailored very specifically for Connacht.

We will do a double training session today and focus on the areas where we think we can cause them the problems and work on how we can react most effectively to them putting pressure on us.

There is a lot of significance riding on this Connacht game on Friday.

We need to stay ahead of Connacht to remain in the Heineken Cup next year and if we can take points off them in this game on Friday it will be less points for them to use to catch us with.

At the end of the day we have got to win more than this match.

We have got to aim to win this and go on to win all our home games - and hopefully the away game in Cardiff as well because we won't be guaranteed to finish ahead of Connacht just by winning on Friday.

We can't look at it as a cup final but there is huge significance on it and we realise we need to get a good win by putting in a better performance than we have the last few weeks on the road.

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