Ulster Rugby coach Mark Anscombe full of praise after superb victory over Edinburgh
Published 23/11/2013 | 04:24
Ulster's satisfaction at having picked up five points was offset by the cost at which that impressive 41-17 win was achieved.
Injuries to locks Iain Henderson and Lewis Stevenson, plus three quarter-back Michael Allen coupled with the news that No 8 Nick Williams – a late withdrawal from last night's starting line-up – have left them facing something of a crisis.
Coach Mark Anscombe admitted: "It is a concern, particularly in the second row. Henderson's got a hamstring and that could be a good few weeks.
"Stevenson's got a ligament injury so that could be anywhere from two to six, so we've taken a bit of a hit there.
"And Johann (Muller, the Ulster captain), it's still early days to know if he'll be back for next week, so it's good to have Dan Tuohy back.
"We'll just have to reassess that to give us a bit of time.
"And Nick could be six weeks at least, so there's a few little concerns and we've just got to make sure we look after the ones who are still there and hopefully we can get through the next month alright."
He was able to offer more reassuring news on centre Luke Marshall, whose substitution was down to nothing more serious than cramp. Michael Allen's early departure was attributed to "a bang on the jaw".
"Luke won't be any problem but we'll just have to assess how Michael is," Anscombe said.
"Darren Cave's alright; he'd a bit of cramp and he took a head knock when he collided with Andrew Trimble but he's fine."
On a brighter note, he reflected on his side's maximum haul by saying: "To get a bonus point win is nice.
"It's been a disruptive sort of week with the fact of thinking what we're going to have.
"Look, you want them (the players at Irish camp) back, because they're class players, but it just doesn't give us the time to do the training with them.
"But I thought it was good. It gave others opportunities.
"We're disappointed with some soft tries we conceded and conceding three. That was a bit disappointing.
"But we scored some nice tries and some of the guys who haven't had a lot of game time stood out tonight and played well.
"That's what you want; we talked about it during the week – players taking their opportunities when they come and they don't know at all when that may be.
"But they've done the work and preparation and a few of them stood out tonight."