Mumm wants big bang for New Year

Mon, 30 Dec 2013 12:27
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Exeter Chiefs may not have finished 2013 as they would have hoped, but already skipper Dean Mumm is aiming to start the New Year with a bang.

Exeter Chiefs may not have finished 2013 as they would have hoped, but already skipper Dean Mumm is aiming to start the New Year with a bang.

Just days after coming unstuck 6-22 to Harlequins at a packed Twickenham, the experienced Aussie forward already has his sights set on Sunday's Premiership trip to London Wasps.

Determined to get Devon's finest back amongst the division's leading pack, Mumm says it's vital he and his team-mates respond in the right way at Adams Park.

"Sunday's game certainly takes on greater importance now," said Mumm.

"This week was a close battle between fourth and fifth, and next week it will be sixth against seventh.

"The games come thick and fast and every game becomes more important as you move towards the end of the season, so we need to turn ourselves around pretty sharp. Wasps away from home is a tough challenge, but it is one we will certainly be up for."

Unlike the Chiefs, Wasps picked ended the calendar year on a high point as they recorded a victory on the road at Newcastle Falcons. However, the Chiefs have already overcome their rivals 30-26 at Sandy Park and hopes are high that they can claim their first league double of the season.

For that to happen, though, Rob Baxter's men will need to up their game from that which they displayed at English Rugby HQ last time out. A disappointing first half display allowed Harlequins to race into a 19-3 half-time lead thanks to tries from Nick Evans, Charlie Walker and Mike Brown. Although the Chiefs were much improved in the second period, Mumm admitted their endeavours in the first 40 had left them with too much to do.

"It was a disappointing first half," added Mumm.

"We did not turn up with the vigour and intent that we wanted to come with, and we consequently left ourselves with a gap which was very hard to come back from.

"The intent and the will in the second half was certainly much better, and we created some opportunities but we didn't finish them. It was maybe a game of two halves, but we didn't really nail the points in the second half and so it is a little bit of a disappointing trip up to Twickenham, but we move on.

"Harlequins did nothing that we hadn't seen beforehand, but full credit to them, they did attack well and with versatility," said Mumm, the 33-cap Australia international.

"They attacked with kicking as well as with ball in hand, their off-loads were very good, and they made a lot of metres up through the middle with pick and go. "They attacked right across the park. They did well and capitalised on the opportunities they had, and consequently they had a good lead at half-time."

Indeed, it was a frustrating afternoon for the Chiefs and Mumm, who throughout Saturday's contest was seen to be involved in a number of animated conversations with referee J-P Doyle over some of the Irishman's decision-making.

"I was a little bit frustrated with the referee, but that happens. There is going to be frustration between a captain and a ref," he explained. "You have got to try your hardest to take the ref out of it, and perhaps sometimes we left things a little bit messy and open to interpretation."

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Sat, 24 March 2018
Munster v Scarlets 17h30 Thomond Park
Newcastle Falcons v Northampton Saints 17h30 Kingston Park
Ospreys v Leinster 19h35 Liberty Stadium
Sun, 25 March 2018
Leicester Tigers v Wasps 15h00 Welford Road
Fri, 30 March 2018
Chiefs v Highlanders 06h35 Hamilton
Rebels v Hurricanes 08h45 Melbourne
Scarlets v La Rochelle 17h30 Parc y Scarlets
Sat, 31 March 2018
Blues v Sharks 06h35 Eden Park
Brumbies v Waratahs 08h45 Canberra
Bulls v Stormers 15h15 Loftus Versfeld
Munster v Toulon 15h15 Limerick
Team P W D L Pts
Exeter Chiefs 18 13 0 5 65
Saracens 18 12 0 6 53
Wasps 17 11 1 5 54
Gloucester 18 10 1 7 51
Newcastle Falcons 17 11 0 6 50
Sale Sharks 18 9 0 9 48
Leicester Tigers 17 10 0 7 47
Bath 18 9 0 9 46
Harlequins 18 7 0 11 36
Northampton Saints 17 6 0 11 31
Worcester Warriors 18 5 0 13 27
London Irish 18 2 0 16 17