Edinburgh Rugby winger Tim Visser was delighted to see smiles on his team-mates faces earlier this week as they trained at BT Murrayfield – and he is determined for those smiles to still be there come tomorrow morning.
For that to be the case the Capital outfit will have to put in a good showing in their very testing European Rugby Challenge Cup Pool 4 opener away to Bordeaux-Bègles tonight.
The smiles in the early part of the week, before the long journey to France began in the early hours of yesterday, were down to the side’s 24-10 win over Newport Gwent Dragons in the Guinness PRO12 last Saturday.
Visser grabbed a try in that one to give Alan Solomons’ men their first taste of victory since the opening weekend of the league season in early September.
And, although not fully repairing the damage done in losses to Connacht, the Ospreys and Ulster and a draw with the Scarlets, it meant that for the first time in a while the squad was buzzing from the very start of the week.
The 27-year-old said: “There has been a different feeling around the place this week, for sure. In testament to the group of players we have stayed very positive throughout the last few weeks and we have always had belief.
“However, a win does wonders for confidence and the coach [Solomons] has to take a lot of credit for that by saying to us ‘if you stick with our game plan then it will eventually get you a result’ and it did just that at the weekend.
“The timing of the win was really good for us because you need that ray of light at some point when you are going through a tough time. After a win it does make things a lot easier because after a loss analysis tends to be tougher while after a win there is just generally a better feeling in the camp.”
However, Visser knows that for Edinburgh Rugby to get anything from tonight’s encounter in the Stade André Moga they will have to match one of the in-form French clubs.
He continued: “Bordeaux are flying at the moment. They were one of the teams that was quite unknown at the start of the season, but since then they have really shown what they can do.
“If you watch any of the highlights packages coming out of France at the moment the main things that you see are some ridiculous tries by Bordeaux and they are playing some really expansive rugby at the moment.
“We have to be careful with this kind of match because we don’t want to get dragged into the way they play and end up with another Racing Metro [Edinburgh Rugby eventually won that match 48-47 in 2011 having been 24 points behind]. We want to try and play systematic rugby and stick to the game plan that we have been playing.
“At the weekend against the Dragons we showed if we carry out that game plan well then we can win games with it and really dominate and press opposition teams with it.”