Young’s Blues still fresh and firing

Cardiff Blues coach Dai Young has warned Gloucester there is still plenty of gas left in the tank ahead of the Welsh region's debut cup final. [more]

Young’s Blues still fresh and firing

Cardiff Blues coach Dai Young has warned Gloucester there is still plenty of gas left in the tank ahead of the Welsh region’s debut cup final.

The ‘cup kings’ chase a historic piece of silverware against the Guinness Premiership giants in Saturday’s EDF Energy Cup final at Twickenham.

But former Lions tourist Young insists they are not running on empty following their hard-fought Heineken Cup quarter-final triumph over Toulouse last weekend.

"It’s better to be building into big matches and cup finals on the back of good performances and results rather meaningless games we’ve had in the past,” said Young.

"We all see the physical effects on the players but it’s the mental fatigue that the players have to go through that sometimes we underestimate.

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"There’s a lot of thought and emotion so we have made sure we’re not training for long. We just work on specific things because we’re totally focussed on the job in hand.

"It’s a huge challenge but we need to sustain these levels of commitment and attitude to continue to nail the big games."

The Blues’ stunning victory over the three-times European champions extended their unbeaten cup run to 11 games – including a double over Gloucester – this season.

The win over Toulouse has set up another Anglo-Welsh showdown when the Blues meet Leicester Tigers in the semi-finals of the Heineken Cup at the Millennium Stadium on May 3. And the Blues chief reckons there is more to come from his fully-fit squad.

"We have shown a huge amount of team spirit and commitment in the last few weeks,” added Young.

“Our defence has been outstanding but our attacking play needs to improve.

"When we played Gloucester in Cardiff, we hit a purple patch and they missed a few chances and that proved to be the difference on the day. We have to nail our opportunities."

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