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Mulvihill hopes CAP crowd are in store for another blockbuster PRO14 clash

27th September 2018

John Mulvihill hopes the Cardiff Arms Park crowd is set for another memorable occasion, as Cardiff Blues are set to welcome Toyota Cheetahs to the Welsh capital on Friday (KO 7.35pm)

The Arms Park crowd have been treated to 14 tries in the opening two home fixtures this season, as Wales’ Capital Region picked up their first win of the campaign last week, with a 37-13 thrashing of Munster.

The head coach, who has been impressed with the atmosphere in the early stages of the campaign, wants to see his side continue to display the free-flowing attacking rugby, but warns that Cheetahs’ attack can prove to be equally devastating when given an opportunity.

“The two home games have been absolutely fantastic so far, and hopefully everyone will come back down to support the boys on Friday,” said Mulvihill.

“We want to put in a big performance to give the supporters a reason to keep coming back to watch.

“We’ve had two really good nights as well, where it’s been quite still and Leinster and Munster have also looked to use the ball, and I think tomorrow will also be a great spectacle for anyone who comes down to have a look.

“Last week, it looked like we were a lot more fluid in our attacking game and if the forwards can give us front-foot ball, then we’ll be very difficult to stop.

“We’ll have a chance to counter-attack against these guys so it will be about making sure we work off-the-ball and put ourselves in good position to get the ball back.

“We’ve watched them over the last couple of weeks, and they’re a team that attack really well with an exciting back-three.

“If you give them too much opportunity on turnover ball, or if you leave too much space behind, they can be very dangerous. 

“If they get back-field, they will be very hard to stop. It will be up to us to stop them at second or third phase after any turnover or set-piece.

“If we can hold ball a bit longer then we’ll score points, but if not we’ll put our defence under pressure.”

Three changes have been made to the Cardiff Blues side that defeated Munster, with Olly Robinson, Rory Thornton and Scott Andrews coming into the pack, while the backline remains unchanged.

Meanwhile, Cheetahs put a stop to their losing streak last week, as they held Ulster to an entertaining 39-39 draw at Toyota Stadium.

Mulvihill hopes to see consistency in the quality of his side’s performances, but expects to see the South African carry their form on the road.

“If we don’t put a good performance in this week, it will be like taking a step backwards,” said the Australian.

“We’ve set a standard of where we need to be now and therefore need to make sure we put in a repeat performance in this week.

“The boys turned up with a bounce in their step on Monday, and got straight back into it and it’s been a good week of training.

“We’ve had a slightly shorter week in preparation of going from Friday to Friday and the travel before that, so the boys should be fresh and ready to go tomorrow night.

“We’ve had a few changes over the last couple of weeks and had a really good performance out of the boys last week, so it’s important that we reward that with some consistent selections.

“The South African sides take a little bit more time to warm up. If you look at the performances of Cheetahs and Southern Kings last week - at home and four weeks into the competition - they really stepped up.

“I would expect them to take that form onto the road.

“Generally, in Super Rugby, the African sides have travelled well. They get away, set their own environment and I’m expecting they’ll be looking forward to this trip.”

#PackCAP and play your part once again as Cardiff Blues go toe-to-toe against South African side, Toyota Cheetahs.