Abbott admits beaten Warriors must improve

Captain Jake Abbott admitted naivety cost Warriors as they lost out in the JP Morgan Asset Management Premiership Rugby 7s Series at Kingsholm.

Warriors suffered defeats to Bath Rugby, hosts Gloucester Rugby and cruel late defeat to Exeter Chiefs on Thursday night.

Former England Sevens ace Abbott was left bitterly disappointed by the manner of the exit from the competition and insisted lessons would be learnt before pre-season games next month.

“We are bitterly disappointed to lose all three games,” said Abbott. “We were a little bit naïve at times and the biggest factor was we didn’t look after the ball well enough.

“We had the boys on the sheet with unbelievable speed and individual skill, but we didn’t get the ball to them enough. That was the biggest mistake we made.

“In every game we had good spells. But a combination of not looking after the ball well enough and making mistakes in defence cost us.

“The hardest time to work in sevens is in defence and I just think that combination, and naivety, let us down.

“Some of the lads effort was fantastic,” he added. “We did stick in games and we came back against Gloucester and almost won the Exeter game. But it isn’t good enough to lose all three.

“The positive to take is we have made these mistakes early and can now all go away and work at our game in 15s and be better this season.

“We will beat ourselves up and we will have to work harder to try and get spots in the pre-season games.”

Abbott was also quick to praise the impact of youngsters such as Ben Howard, Tom Carlisle and Joe Nellany who all gained valuable experience on the night while new boys David Lemi and Josh Matavesi grabbed tries.

He said: “It was good to see some of the younger lads get an opportunity, but I just wish they had more of the ball. We have to put it behind us and work as hard as we can.

“Ben is the fastest player in the squad at the moment and is working hard. I thought he impressed and Besty (Neil Best), for a big guy, put himself about.

“The new lads also look very confident on the ball and, in terms of what we want to do this year, that is a huge positive.

“We have got the players, it is just unfortunate we didn’t showcase them enough here. The potential is there and we have just got to keep working.

“I had spells when I was happy; I worked hard and I got a little consolation try,” he added.

“There is a lot to work on and I will enjoy when Phil Larder comes in now and we can work on the defence more.

“We have done seven weeks of pre-season and it has been hard. We will now take some time to get some rest and hopefully we will come back feeling fresh for the four pre-season games.”