Quins chief urges focus

Harlequins director of rugby Conor O’Shea has urged his side to maintain their focus as they chase both Premiership and Amlin Challenge Cup glory this season (Harlequins 25/1 – Aviva Premiership Grand Final Winner).

Quins’ 24-20 victory over Leicester Tigers at the Stoop last Friday means they are still in with a chance of a top-four Aviva Premiership finish, while they are preparing to take on Northampton Saints in their European semi-final on Friday.

O’Shea’s side have won five of their last six league games and will hope to maintain that sort of form as they push for a play-off place – and the Irishman says they must keep their nerve for the run-in.

He said: “It means nothing unless you get there. The team that wins the title is the one that gets remembered.

“We know we have learnt a huge number of lessons this season – how to manage adversity on and off the pitch and how to come back kicking through the other side and also a belief in our style.”

Quins have stuck to their principles this season and O’Shea is pleased they appear to finally be reaping the rewards as the business end of the season approaches.

He added: “There is a saying we had at the start of the season, ‘you can’t steal second base by keeping your foot on first’.

“We’ll take chances. Sometimes it won’t come off, but we’ll keep trying and that’s the way we play. That doesn’t mean it is the right way, but it is our way.”

O’Shea knows Quins face a crucial few games coming up but insists they will be approaching them with confidence (Quins 7/2 – Amlin Challenge Cup outright).

He said: “We have to win our final two games and even then it might not be enough. But we will go to Northampton with the bit between our teeth and we will try and get to a final.”

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