Biarritz Olympique’s goal-kicking scrum half Dimitri Yachvili is adamant that “we are more motivated than ever to beat Leinster Lions” in their Heineken Cup quarter-final clash.
Biarritz Olympique’s goal-kicking scrum half Dimitri Yachvili is adamant that “we are more motivated than ever to beat Leinster Lions” in their Heineken Cup quarter-final clash at Lansdowne Road a week Saturday.
Yachvili, who scored 36 points in three outings for France in the Six Nations, is relishing a return to the ground where France last month lost 15-12.
“After watching Ireland’s defeat to England, who were so impressive on Sunday, us French players are even more frustrated to have lost by such a small margin in Dublin. However, on a personal level, I see our Heineken Cup quarter-final against Leinster as a chance to put that score right.
“Ireland’s loss at home shows they are not invincible there which makes us even more motivated to go there and win. It makes us more comfortable about going to Lansdowne Road knowing that an Irish team can lose there but it will also help Leinster because I am sure those players won’t want to lose there twice.
“After all, Lansdowne Road is still an exceptional place where not many teams come away with a win. We would also like to get back for our defeat in Ulster earlier in the season by beating Leinster. We really want to go as far as possible in this competition and we are ambitious about our chances.
“It is a big help having already played at Lansdowne Road for France this season, it means that I know what to expect and it won’t be a new experience when we get out onto the pitch.
“I know there’s a lot of swirling wind and that the atmosphere is exceptional with the supporters being so passionate. I also played against some of the Leinster players, who, like all Irish players are physical but very mobile. We know what will be waiting for us.
“It is a huge occasion for our club and we are looking forward to it. Everyone still involved in the Heineken Cup can’t wait for the chance to try and win it – and to have over 40,000 people at the game is huge – but it’s to be expected. It’s a quarter-final and it’s natural to have huge interest for the game, especially in Ireland, where the public gets so involved. We will just have to try more than ever to put that out of our minds on the day and get on with the game.”