Twenty minutes, and then leaves. This Friday against Carcassonne, Biarritz Olympique returned a perfect copy for the first twenty minutes, with two tries, and a licked and seductive game as a bonus. But gradually, the Biarrots died out. The fault of course with Carcassonne, which has never loose anything, but also with themselves. Due to a lack of self-confidence, and while they were in control of the situation, the players of Matthew Clarkin and Shaun Sowerby multiplied the inaccuracies, hand errors and indiscipline. To the point, when there was an offensive bonus to get, to attempt a penalty in the 80th when the score was 29 to 23 for them… for fear of a 90m raise from Carcassonne in the event of a ball poorly controlled.
Final score, 32-23 for Biarritz against Carcassonne. The Biarrots end this first block of Pro D2 with a mixed record, two wins, two losses and a draw. In content, they are still struggling to convince, despite some flashes that hint at the full potential of this team.
Gilles Bosch, opening half of Biarritz: “We had the opportunity to take the offensive bonus, it would have been a big result, but the decision to secure the victory was the right one too. We had planned to play them with a lot of speed, it worked, then we fell back into our ways, and they woke up. When they come back to a point, we weren’t scared, but we’re not going to lie to each other, it’s true that we’re not a confident team. We are having a mixed start to the season, so inevitably, as soon as we take points, we lower our heads a little, we have to work on that, find our confidence. We developed a good game, we have to build on that, to be more consistent over 80 minutes. What’s frustrating is what we manage to do as a game for 20 minutes, and then afterwards, we don’t do it for 60 minutes. We don’t take pleasure, and when we leave the match, we know that there was something better to do. We may need to talk a little less, we talk a lot on the pitch, we should focus a little more on the role of all of us, even when things are going badly. This is how we come back to matches.”
Bastien Soury, hooker from Biarritz: ” [À la 80e], I tell myself that there is a six-point gap, we are one test away from the bonus, we don’t have much to lose, but afterwards, given how capable we are of alternating the very good and the very very bad, we might have been able to take a try from 90m and lose the match. We have a captain who made a decision, we respected it, we all followed the captain. I gave my opinion, he told me it would be the three points, and it was. We do 20 minutes where we control the game, and I think after that goes to our heads. We allow ourselves to do things, we don’t respect Carcassonne, we take a backlash and in the end, we play with the pressure until the 75th because Carcassonne has picked up. Maybe that’s also what makes us take the points at the end rather than going into touch, in the end we don’t have that much confidence. I’m not going to lie to you, we are not confident. We come down from Top 14, we should have consistency in what we produce. Yes we are in reconstruction, but we had a preparation like everyone else, we are not the only ones in this case. I’m not going to hide, I speak on the pitch, because I’m like that. I try to keep quiet because there is a captain and a hinge to follow, but when I see that we send chisteras, after a while, captain or not, you have to tell the guys what what we think.“
Shaun Sowerby, scholar trainer from Biarritz: “When you are at the edge of the field, the feeling is not the same as for the players. We have to trust the leaders and the captain. We try to have a common vision, but sometimes we see things differently. Personally, I was for the penalty, and potentially the bonus, because I don’t see Carcassonne leaving its camp and registering a converted try, but that’s my personal opinion. I’m not on the pitch, I’m more lucid, I haven’t done 80 minutes of effort. Maybe they wanted to validate the efforts they put in the whole match, there’s no problem, we have to analyze all that. On the other hand, I don’t think we take three points rather than the penalty for lack of confidence. But again, I’m not on the field, facing a tough opponent moreover. It is certain that there is frustration, disappointment, even perhaps relief for some. But we are talking about an offensive bonus point left on the way by Biarritz. If we are from Carcassonnais, we can be disappointed not to bring anything back after this match. I see both sides.“
Next match for Biarritz, Thursday October 6, after a week of break which will do good, on the side of Montauban. At the end of the first block, Biarritz is in 10th place.