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No bigger occasion than Toulouse at CAP - Wilson

10th January 2018

Danny Wilson insists there is no greater occasion for the Cardiff Arms Park crowd than Sunday's crucial Challenge Cup clash against European giants, Toulouse.

The Blues welcome the four-times former Heineken Cup winners to the Welsh Capital, and a win against Ugo Mola’s side could see them secure their place in the knockout stages for the second consecutive season.

Wilson, reflecting on October’s stunning victory in the reverse fixture, believes the Arms Park atmosphere can play a huge role in the encounter and reveals his side are hungry to back up the win at Stade Ernest Wallon.

“A home game in Europe, at this stage, against the giants of Toulouse is a massive game, full stop,” said Wilson.

“But to play it in the circumstances we’re in, having beaten them away from home which is one of our biggest wins in my time here, but we have to back it up by beating them at home.

“We know their squad is phenomenal and they’ve got some superstars in there, but we know what’s at stake for us.

“Hopefully the Arms Park is as busy as it can be on Sunday evening and we can get a good atmosphere for a good European encounter.

“It will make the difference. It’s simple. In tight games where the home crowd gets behind the boys, I certainly feel it as a coach to get that atmosphere.

"We’re top of our group, it’s a home game against Toulouse and, personally, it’s one of those big ones which people come out to watch.”

The Cardiff Blues pack has been working hard this week on the scrum, an area which proved a tough test during the festive derbies.

However, Wilson was encouraged by other set-piece aspects from his pack and believes it’s vital to put their own stamp on the game, as they look for an advantage on home turf.

Wilson said: “We’ve defended drives really well over the last two weeks and we’ve driven really well over the last few weeks.

“Scrums has been the big one, and maybe over all three derbies we haven’t scrummaged as well as we have recently.

“We’ve had a horrible and tough scrum session today, with lots of live scrums and lots of scrums on the machine. There’s been a lot of focus in that area.

“Over Christmas with a short turn-around we haven’t been able to spend as much time on scrum work as we usually do. But today we certainly have and bolstered that area a little bit.

“We’ve also tried to play an athletic back five in order to get around the park and play the style of rugby we want to play. 

“The rest of the season we have scrummaged relatively well so we’ve addressed that this week and we won’t come up against a bigger scrum than Toulouse.

“We have to beat them by being able to play some rugby and get speed and tempo into the game.

“We didn’t get that into the game against Ospreys as much as we would’ve hoped for a number of reasons so it’s the balancing act of matching what Toulouse will bring but having the tactical presence of being able to play our game, which will cause them problems on our pitch.”

European Giants Collide at CAP on Sunday as Cardiff Blues take on Toulouse, in a potentially decisive Challenge Cup Pool 2 clash. Danny has spoken - make sure you're there to play your part in a memorable European encounter. Buy your ticket NOW!