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Davies has got us heading firmly in the right direction

By The Citizen  |  Posted: December 11, 2012

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I HAD Gloucester down as pre-match favourites to beat London Irish, but the way the game went they were anything but that heading into the latter stages.

The character and resilience they showed to pull themselves out of trouble must have been very pleasing to Nigel Davies.

When a team wins a game like that, you know the squad must be a happy one. They pulled together for each other and steamrollered the Exiles in the final stages.

Conceding tries like the ones they did – and at the times they did – would have caused Gloucester teams under previous regimes to implode.

But from somewhere Davies has them confident they can score tries and win from anywhere, and Irish must be quaking in their boots at the thought of the Kingsholm return on Saturday.

There seems to be a true backbone about the Cherry and Whites this season, the like of which has never been there in the professional era.

It's too early to tell if that will stand up in the true pressure games. I am a sceptic until proven wrong about Gloucester in big finals, but there are the green shoots of something building under Davies that I have a good feeling about.

The European Challenge Cup may not be the arena in which sides can reach their peak, but I can tell you the rest of the Premiership will be taking notice of what is going on at Kingsholm this season.

Remember the likes of Saracens and Harlequins took a few seasons under their current regimes to reach the level they are currently at – and I am the first to admit that is a level above Gloucester at the moment.

But Davies hasn't even had half a season at Kingsholm yet, and we are already seeing what an influence he has had.

Saying that, he now enters a crucial phase where he has to begin shaping his squad for next season.

Between now and the middle of February he becomes a very busy man, juggling getting the squad ready for games with longer-term decisions on who stays and who goes.

I'm not certain of the financial wriggle room he has, but hopefully he can move Gloucester forward again come next season.

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  • LucaTowers  |  December 11 2012, 7:28AM

    Thank goodness that Gloucester Rugby chose and signed Nigel Davies instead of the daft, Gloucester City football fan's suggestion of someone like an Eddie O'Sullivan. Clueless, absolutely clueless.

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