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Derby clash set to be a spectacle - Hodges

16th November 2016

Richard Hodges is expecting Friday's derby clash to be a spectacle for both sides.

The Anglo-Welsh Cup fixture will see the O’s visit the ground for the first time since December 2013. League clashes between both sides have been held on Judgement Day at Principality Stadium over the past three years.
The Blues opened their Anglo-Welsh Cup campaign with a heavy defeat to Exeter Chiefs, and Hodges’ young side are desperate to bounce back at Friday’s derby.
“The opportunity to get the Ospreys on our pitch, on what’s forecasted to be a dry night with little wind, lends itself to be a big occasion for both sides,” said Hodges.
“We want to have a good crack at a Welsh derby at home on Friday night. That will stoke the fire, along with a bit of hurt after Sunday, which means we should be quite an energised group come 7.15pm on Friday.”
The squad for the Exeter match averaged an age of 20 years old, but Hodges is set to call upon more senior members of the Cardiff Blues team for the match-up with Ospreys.
Preparations for Friday’s game are well underway, and Hodges believes it is important to take lessons learnt from last week’s performance if they are to taste success against Steve Tandy’s side.
Hodges said: “Everybody was disappointed with how Sunday went. We came in yesterday and the boys had their individual unit and team reviews. We’ve gone through, in detail, the lessons that need to be learnt ready for the Ospreys on Friday night.
“It’s been quite a methodical approach towards getting the team prepared this week and with a bit more experience coming into the squad we feel in a better place.”
“Danny addressed the boys this morning and it’s very important for them to know that his eyes are focused on this group to see who has the ability to take that next step.
“Everybody’s been good enough through the age grade pathway to earn an opportunity in tier one or tier two of our academy.
“But who can earn that senior contract ready for next season? Is anyone putting their hands up ready for Connacht and Ulster over the next couple weeks?
“A few boys have done that, likewise there is a bit of pressure on some boys who may have struggled to learn the lessons from last week and will be given another opportunity to put it right against Ospreys on Friday.”