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Dublin: 15 °C Saturday 11 July, 2020

Connacht will take confidence from performance - Marmion

Connacht scrum half Kieran Marmion delivered another fine display even though Pat Lam’s side were defeated by Saracens.

Kieran Marmion crosses for a delightful try during Friday's Heineken Cup match at the Sportsground.
Kieran Marmion crosses for a delightful try during Friday's Heineken Cup match at the Sportsground.
Image: ©INPHO/James Crombie

SINCE JOINING THE Connacht revolution in the west of Ireland Kieran Marmion has flared to prominence.

Ultimately Friday’s Heineken Cup Pool 3 opener with Saracens may have ended in defeat for Connacht, but Marmion’s abrasive display was among the many positives taken by the locals.

Saracens had the grunt and guile to post a victory and Marmion admitted that the Connacht players were gutted because they felt that this certainly fell into the one that got away category.

“It is very disappointing because when the players came in from the pitch we just knew that we had a chance to win that game. We are all obviously proud of the effort we put in, but there was a chance to win that game and we are disappointed,” was Marmion’s assessment at the end of a gripping clash.

Connacht were in trouble initially as they trailed by 3-14 after only nine minutes before a gutsy revival brought them level at the break.

“We stayed positive because we knew that we didn’t get off to the best of starts,” Marmion said. “As soon as we got a few points on the board the crowd really lifted us and we kept pushing on. It was unfortunate that it just didn’t happen for us in the end.”

Marmion’s opportunistic 18th minute try when scampering clear following a testing Dan Parks kick was the injection Connacht craved at a critical time. Unsure whether offside or not Marmion was thrilled to score in such a high stakes encounter.

“I looked at the touch judge and he shook his head as if I shouldn’t go for it, but lucky enough it just opened up and I was in. We put a real emphasis on a good kick this week and we wanted to put pressure on and I felt that we did that very well.”

Despite the loss Marmion wants Connacht to summon an instant response by defeating Italian outfit Zebre next Saturday. “This display will give us some confidence because we put in a better performance than we did last week in Treviso. It has given us some confidence even though we are disappointed. We just need to get a win now next week.”

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