Poor discipline frustrates Easterby
Poor discipline frustrates EasterbySHARE
Scarlets coach Simon Easterby admitted a lack of discipline had cost his side dear as they fell at the penultimate hurdle in the Pro12 away at Ulster.
A poor end to the first half in Ravenhill allowed the home side to stretch into an 18-3 lead, which they extended early in the second half.
The Scarlets hit back with two late tries from Gareth Davies and Sione Timani but still ended up going down 28-17, meaning that Ulster will head to their first Pro12 play-off final since the new system was put in place.
And despite losing Wales fly-half Rhys Priestland to injury in the warm-up, Easterby acknowledged that the Scarlets had contributed to their own downfall at times.
He said: "In the first 60-65 minutes we made far too many errors in discipline and they outmuscled us. We came back strong in the last 15 minutes and we probably finished how we want to start next season but it was too little, too late.
"The injuries didn't help. Rhys went down in the warm-up and there was a combination of things in the game which didn't help.
"But we are far better than that, we turned the ball over too many times and allowed Ulster most of their scores in that first half.
"When you are 25-3 down they probably switch off a little bit and we play a bit more and we showed some good stuff but we gave them far too much in the first part of the game.
"We're disappointed but we'll learn from this and hopefully come back stronger next season.
"Their physicality made a difference in the first half and our error count and turnover rate was too high.
"We were our own worst enemy at times and that just fed them.
"I was so proud of the players the way they came back in the last quarter. They were out on their feet and showed a huge amount of character to come back into the game."