After a tense afternoon in Treviso ended with a narrow win, Ospreys head coach Sean Holley acknowledged that while it hadn't been a great performance, the endeavour and spirit shown was very pleasing.
Speaking post-match at the Stadio Comunale di Monigo, Holley commented: "It was a hard earned win, we really had to fight for everything this afternoon. We didn't play great, but we dug in well and showed a lot of resolve at the end to make sure of the win.
"Treviso will claim a lot of scalps here this season, just as they did last year. They are a very difficult team to play against and some good sides have come away from here beaten. Teams don't relish coming here, that's for certain, so although we aren't happy about how we played this afternoon we are pleased with the win," he added.
Holley was full of praise for the Italian team who made his more highly rated side work hard for their away win.
He said: "The first try from Tom Isaacs was really timely, coming just before half-time. We probably didn't deserve to be as in touch as we were on the first half performance, we were a little bit ragged and the heat got to us a little bit, it was very hot out there. You have to give credit to Treviso as well, they played really well.
"We started the second half brightly, applied a bit of early pressure, retaining the ball well and recycling, which allowed Tom Smith to get over for our second try."
The Ospreys boss explained that he was encourgaed by the fact that his team had not played to their potential, yet had still managed to secure victory.
"Treviso made life very difficult for us. When we were able to get to grips with them, particularly in the second half, keep the ball and go through phases, then we looked more threatening, but it wasn't a great performance by any stretch of the imagination.
"We saw some excellent goal-kicking from Dan Biggar, he punished them from all areas of the field, but then when we lost him for the closing stages we showed a lot of resolve and determination to stick in there for the win. We used the bench well and had a younger group of players on by then, who saw us through in the end.
"There was a lot of pressure on that last kick, and with Dan yellow carded Kristian Phillips had to step up for it. He struck it well and showed good character," he said.
Holley is feeling positive about his team's prospects going forward, but added that they will need to learn from the experience against Treviso and step up in the weeks to come.
"We've got three wins from three and that's a good start considering we aren't playing as well as we can do. There's been plenty to be happy about, endeavour, effort and plenty of resolve, but we can still play a lot better. There's still a lot of work to do, particularly in the line-out and tackle area, so we aren't getting carried away and won't allow anyone within the group to get carried away," he revealed.
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