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Turnbull issues rallying call to supporters

First Team News | 5th April 2022

Josh Turnbull has issued a Call to Arms and urged the Cardiff crowd to be the 16th man as they target revenge in the United Rugby Championship on Saturday. 

The Blue and Blacks crashed to a disappointing derby defeat to the West Malians last weekend but have the rare opportunity of a rematch just seven days later. 

Turnbull was rested for the Parc y Scarlets defeat, having played all but seven minutes of the club’s previous URC encounters, but he is now available for action and relishing a return to home comforts.

While Dai Young’s men have frustratingly not won on the road this season, and it is something that needs addressing, Turnbull hopes home advantage can prove pivotal. 

Turnbull said: “This year, we’ve only lost two at home, one in Europe, one in the league. So we’re making it a really hard place to come for opposition teams. 

“A big part of that is the crowd and they can intimidate the opposition. We can feed off that and we feel the enthusiasm that they bring and hopefully we’ll get that again this weekend.

“In the games against Leinster and Glasgow we went behind and we were fighting an uphill battle at points. But the crowd gave us that lift that we needed to turn things around. 

“We’re looking to bounce back this week and we’re going to need our supporters as our 16th man. We need them to come out and be that voice.”

Cardiff made a promising start against the Scarlets and looked the more comfortable team in the opening quarter, however things soon unravelled and the hosts took control.

Dwayne Peel’s side ran in four tries as they claimed a 35-20 bonus-point win, which left Young and his charges bitterly disappointed. 

There have been some honest assessments in the aftermath and Turnbull is acutely aware that the Blue and Blacks have to respond back at the Arms Park.

He added: “We had a pretty brutal meeting this morning. What we showed on the pitch wasn’t us and didn’t represent what we stand for as a group. 

“Ultimately we’ve got to front up this week, take what’s happened on the chin and improve in all facets of the game. If we do that we’ll be in with a great chance of winning the game.

“I spoke about us having a bit more of an attitude this week going into the game and sometimes its not necessarily what you do with the ball, it’s the unseen stuff like work rate, positioning and dedication. 

“We’ve got to be tougher on each other in terms of that, telling each other ‘you can rest when you get into position’ to make it easier for your teammates. Trying not to overthink things, we need to think about what we want to execute.

“We needed a bit more enthusiasm for the game in order to get that win. 

“The Scarlets outworked us in areas that have been our strong points this season. We’ve played against some very strong teams already and our scrum and line-out have faired pretty well throughout. It wasn’t as strong as it has been. 

“For us it’s about getting back to those standards that we’d set for ourselves against teams like Leinster and the Lions, and although we got beat convincingly in the end, our set piece went well against the Stormers in the trip to South Africa. The Lions had taken every team to the sword in terms of their scrum and we were able to compete with them. It’s about doing it this Saturday in the derby.”

Tickets for Cardiff Rugby v Scarlets at Cardiff Arms Park on Saturday, April 9 (3.15pm) are available now but selling fast. Click here to secure yours today!