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Ulster need to step it up or bubble will burst, says Barakat

By Michael Sadlier

Ulster went back to the top of the PRO12 table after another disjointed performance still proved enough to see off reigning champions Glasgow Warriors 13-10 at the Kingspan Stadium.

And Callum Black was the toast of Belfast after scoring Ulster's only try - his first in a white shirt - on what was his 100th appearance with Paddy Jackson's conversion and penalty getting them over the line after trailing 5-3 at half-time.

Ruan Pienaar had slotted Ulster's only points in that opening 40 minutes before going off with a head injury with the Warriors coming away with a losing bonus point with the final play of a game in which they also outscored Ulster by two tries to one.

Ulster assistant coach Joe Barakat said: "We spoke last week (against the Dragons) about not playing so well but coming away with the spoils and we repeated that again."

Though relieved to have secured the four points, the Australian was frustrated and concerned that the squad are not producing consistent displays ahead of their third straight home game against the Scarlets tomorrow week.

"I thought we had opportunities in that first-half to finish this game and even go on and pick up that bonus point, but it didn't occur and we didn't have the patience, the decision makers, or the skill levels, to finish it," he said. "It's still positive and we've got to remain positive as we're still leading the competition.

"You're winning ugly but if you don't fix it up the bubble will burst. We've got some important games to play and we're annoyed that we're leaving bonus points out there."

It was another evening when Ulster just didn't convince and where the collective was not where Les Kiss would want it to be.

"We're just creating so many opportunities, but the problem is that this game is about patience," said Barakat.

"We found so many holes in the opposition that we feel like we need to score off every play.

"We've got to show a greater level of patience with the ball.

"We've got to have boys making the right decisions. We've gone for 19 weeks straight and there could fatigue, but everybody's gone through that so we can't use it as an excuse."

Barakat also dismissed any notion that further disruption from players being in Ireland camp is having an adverse effect with Jackson, Stuart McCloskey and Rob Herring all being involved during the week.

"We've just got to look at going forward and we've got an important game against the Scarlets coming up," he added. "Jacob Stockdale finished in a fantastic place and we've got good guys who can step into positions and we trust them."

Belfast Telegraph


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