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Worcester boss Dean Ryan: Judge us on present not on past

Worcester's director of rugby Dean Ryan spoke of his frustration at having to deal with relegation talk after seeing his promoted side claim a bonus-point 28-20 victory over Newcastle at Sixways.

It was Worcester's second win in four Aviva Premiership games this season and saw them move onto 10 points, level with last season's runners-up Bath and Sale in mid table.

And Ryan, who feels his side could have accrued even more points this campaign, is annoyed that Worcester are being judged on what has gone on in the past rather than their current performances.

He said: " I'm fed up of talking about relegation issues as I'm sure (Newcastle boss) Dean Richards is. We have been competitive in all four matches, picking up 10 points, and we are frustrated that we don't have more.

"We shouldn't be judged on the past but where we are now."

Worcester had a bonus point in the bag by half-time and led 28-10 at one stage before allowing Newcastle to rally and provide the home supporters with some nervous moments.

Two tries from Alex Grove and one each from Bryce Heem and Chris Pennell had secured Worcester that early bonus point with Tom Heathcote converting all four scores.

Michael Young and Tom Catterick scored Newcastle's tries before the break with Mike Delany converting both and adding a penalty to make it 28-17 at the interval. Catterick also kicked a second-half penalty but they still finished one point shy of a bonus point.

Ryan said: "We are a very dangerous side and showed what we can do when everything goes right and I'm not at all surprised that we picked up a bonus point by half-time."

However, he also felt they took their foot off the pedal, adding: "We didn't attack enough in the second half.

"We are not used to being in dominant positions and we missed (injured captain) GJ van Velze out there as we lost a bit of leadership as he has been a big figure in recent weeks."

The result means Newcastle prop up the table without a point from their opening four matches, and director of rugby Richards conceded their "woeful" first-half defending cost them dear.

He said: "Our defence was woeful, it was all over the place and left us with far too much to claw back.

"We defended well in the second half and won it 3-0 but missed a few try-scoring opportunities."

Despite their poor start to the season, Richards remains confident that fortunes will improve.

"Our league position is a fair representation of how we've played so far but it's not reflective of the ability of the side," he said.

"We've had a lot of changes over the past few weeks but we've got to get people singing from the same hymn sheet."


From Belfast Telegraph