Wednesday, 9 September 2009

Young wants Blues to improve

Dai Young has told his Cardiff Blues side to raise their performance levels ahead of their trip to Munster.

The Blues kicked off their Magners League campaign with a slender 22-21 defeat to Edinburgh last weekend. Reigning champions Munster also lost on the opening day to Glasgow and Young admits he is wary of a backlash at Thomond Park.

Young said: "It's not an easy place to go and get a result at the best of times but their performance at Glasgow will hurt them. It's probably the best time to play Munster because they aren't playing their British Lions but then again you don't want to face them when they are hurting.

"The name of Munster goes before them and you only have to look at their record to realise they are a quality team. But these are the challenges we want to meet and face head on."

The Blues have certainly dominated their Irish counterparts after winning five of their last six league meetings. And Young said: "We've done well against Munster over the last couple of years but Thomond Park is a great ground with a great atmosphere.

"We were right in the game last year in Cork until Robin Sowden Taylor was sin-binned and they scored a late try to nick the game.

"But the loss to Edinburgh has focussed our minds because it didn't give us the kick up the backside we needed.

"We've looked sharper in training this week but everyone knows we need to step up to the mark."

Ceri Sweeney returns at fly-half for the Blues as new signing Sam Norton Knight drops to the bench with British Lions No8 Andy Powell starts on the bench.

Cardiff Blues: B Blair; L Halfpenny, G Thomas, D Hewitt, C Czekaj; C Sweeney, G Cooper; J Yapp, R Thomas, T Filise, D Jones, P Tito (capt), M Molitika, X Rush, R Sowden-Taylor Replacements: G Powell, G Williams, S Morgan, A Powell, R Rees, S Norton-Knight, D James


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