Delaney thrilled by Exiles Sale success

Delaney thrilled by Exiles Sale success

LONDON IRISH Interim Head Coach Glenn Delaney was thrilled by how the Exiles responded to their European exit.

Sunday’s 25-23 Aviva Premiership success over Sale Sharks was achieved with another encouraging display as London Irish’s impressive spring improvement continued.

“It is a results business we are in so winning is what we strive to do all of the time- for us it was great to get the win especially following the Edinburgh loss,” Delaney told the Irish Post on Monday.

“When it doesn’t happen for you it can be disappointing, but we are particularly proud of the way we bounced back following the Edinburgh game.”

With several exciting additions arriving in the summer Delaney is adamant that London Irish can become serious top flight competitors again.

“That Edinburgh loss really hurt us as a squad because for so long it was our focus.  The response from the players as a group was magnificent.  It was a testament to the character which exists in our squad and the way we have played over the last three months especially shows that London Irish can be a big club again.

“If you look at the last three months in isolation our form is top six.  It confirms that the players are responding to what we are trying to achieve here.

“There has been a consistent level of progress in our performances which bodes very well for us.  We worked on making sure we stayed in games even when things weren’t going according to plan for us.

“That is something we are very encouraged by.  In three recent games I recall we were in it looking for a score on the final play which is another sign of how close we’ve been even in games we have ended up losing.”

Valuable lessons can be learned from the Edinburgh set back according to Delaney, who remains enthused by the Exiles’ diligent work ethic.

“We were deserving of the win against Sale.  It is a real pity we don’t have a game this weekend.  We had hoped to be in a European Challenge Cup semi-final, but it wasn’t to be.

“As a group I feel the experience players gained from playing in such a high profile play/off match will stand to them in the future.

“It was a painful experience, but it is one that you can use again.  We are giving everything at the moment which is very pleasing to see.”

Delaney highlighted the contribution of Richard Palframan, who made his first London Irish Premiership start.

“Richard Pullfirman was part of a dominant scrum performance.  I think our forward play has been excellent both from a defensive and attacking point of view.  We keep putting ourselves in the picture to win games which is brilliant.

“Young guys coming through are starting to gain experience which is good for the club moving forward.  We give people opportunities to play.  Richard has worked tremendously hard over the past three months so he deserved his chance.”

Another impressive figure in London Irish’s victory was centre Eoin Griffin, who has been influential recently.

“Eoin Griffin held himself together very well even when he was encountering problems with some niggling injuries,” Delaney said.

“He is settling into Premiership rugby and he is doing what we knew he was able to do.  His skill set is suited perfectly to what we are trying to do.  Eoin’s distribution as a midfielder is first class and I’m very pleased for Eoin.

“The way he is performing now is a credit to him.  He came over to England to test himself in a new environment – he has the ability.  That is the reason we wanted him to come here.

“We’ve great competition in midfield – we have options especially at centre.  It is a very strong position for us.”