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Mulvihill excited ahead of crucial block of fixtures

20th November 2018

John Mulvihill has looked ahead to a crucial block of fixtures, which starts with Friday's Guinness PRO14 clash against Glasgow Warriors at Scotstoun Stadium.

Following two weeks out-of-action, Wales’ Capital Region return to competitive rugby, with three consecutive away fixtures, as trips Belfast and Saracens’ Allianz Park in London are also on the cards.

A week later, the English champions are welcomed to the Arms Park, before the Christmas derbies kick off as the Dragons’ visit the Welsh capital on Friday, December 21.

The Cardiff Blues head coach is excited for a series of competitive and vital fixtures, but says it’s important for his side to concentrate on what’s ahead of them this weekend.

“We have Glasgow, Ulster and Saracens all to be played away within three weeks of each other, and we’ll target the first two and concentrate on the Guinness PRO14 first, before we step back into Europe,” said Mulvihill.

“It’s obviously exciting to be playing Saracens both away and home in that time, and then we’ll have the local derbies.

“We’ve got seven big weeks coming up, but we bounce in from the last bracket of games in good shape, having won five of the last seven games.

“We’ve got good confidence going into this next block.

“During the break, we had a chance to re-assess our first 10 weeks of action and also looked ahead to the next 10. 

“We’re really excited about what’s coming up and if we can get a couple of good results in the PRO14, then it will set us up nicely for the double header against Saracens.

“Hopefully we will have a full house at the Cardiff Arms Park in the second of those games, which then leads into the ‘Black Friday’ match against Dragons.

“Everything is there to play for. It’s a little bit different, having Christmas and Boxing Day off this year, but before then we will be playing some of the toughest rugby we’ll have.”

Last month, Adam Hastings inspired the Scottish outfit to a 12-29 win in the Heineken Champions Cup clash at Cardiff Arms Park.

Mulvihill insists his side have learnt lessons from the October defeat, but expects another entertaining game of rugby at Scotstoun.

The Australian said: “Both teams play a similar style of rugby, and having some internationals missing won’t necessarily change that.

“Glasgow are the team that have scored the most tries in the PRO14, and they also kick the least. They’ll cause us a lot of threats in defence so we’ll be looking to make sure that we start strong.

“The first 15 minutes let us down against them in the Champions Cup game. They scored twice. After you take that first 15 minutes away, it was pretty even.

“You certainly can’t give a team of that quality a head start. We’ll be focusing on our start.”