Yorkshire Carnegie ‘out on their feet’ at close of latest loss

Yorkshire Carnegie's director of rugby Chris Stirling.
Yorkshire Carnegie's director of rugby Chris Stirling.
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BOTTOM of the table after seven defeats in eight games, and with injuries mounting, director of rugby Chris Stirling delivered a stark assessment of Yorkshire Carnegie’s current plight.

“We are in a real hole at the moment,” Stirling conceded in the wake of his side’s latest loss, a 17-5 reverse to London Scottish at Emerald Headingley.

Stirling, appointed in the close season, admitted it was the first time he had been “extremely disappointed” with the way Carnegie have played.

Considering the defeat came six days after a club record 72-5 thrashing at London Irish that was a big statement, but Stirling reflected: “We lacked accuracy and some of our work was pretty lethargic.

“What we asked the boys to do in the first half they didn’t until probably five minutes before half-time.”

Prop James Thraves suffered a shoulder injury in the opening moments to add to Yorkshire’s woes.

Stirling added: “We just can’t catch a trick at the moment.

“The boys were trying hard at the end, but they were out on their feet against a Scottish team that brought some resources off the bench and made the difference.”

Welsh international prop Craig Mitchell, who rejoined the club last week from Newcastle Falcons, featured against Scottish.

Stirling said: “He has definitely added some strength and Will Vaughan did a good job.

“That would be the longest period of rugby he would have played for a number of years. There was a slight improvement there, but not where we needed to be.”

New signings fly-half Jade Te Rure and flanker Antonio Kiri Kiri are expected to make their debut away to Coventry on Saturday, which Stirling feels will give the team a timely lift.

“As long as they get off the plane okay they will be playing against Coventry, whether it’s starting or off the bench,” he stressed.

“We are pretty thin on the ground at the moment.

“James will be out for four to six weeks and we have already lost Rowan Jenkins [who has been released] so we are down to one loose-head at the moment, which is really putting some pressure on us.”