Dragons lock Luke Charteris insists Wales’ forthcoming trip to Dublin is the perfect chance to right some wrongs.
Charteris hopes to be part of the Welsh XV that take on Ireland at Croke Park on March 13 as the 2008 Grand Slam Champs look to make amends for a painful Millennium Stadium defeat to France last weekend.
The 26-20 reverse to an unbeaten French side leaves Wales with one win from three Six Nations games and Charteris says the squad as a whole are determined to improve upon that record next time out.
“We go to Ireland and it’s a huge game and a huge opportunity to put right some wrongs,” said Charteris, who came on as a first-half replacement for the injured Deiniol Jones against the French.
“It’s a massive game. A win out there and we’re back on track, aren’t we?
“It’s disappointing three games in to have to change our goals for the championship, but we’ve still got to push ourselves and finish as high as we can.
“We’ve still got to keep pushing the bar as high as we can – we’ve still got two games left and they’re now both massive games.
“Ireland is an incredibly tough place to go, but if we can get the win then we can carry that forward and take something out of this championship.”
Like so many of his other Welsh colleagues who assessed the performance against France last Friday, Charteris comes to the conclusion that Wales could, and perhaps, should have produced a more positive result against Marc Lievremont’s men.
The 26-year-old feels Wales showed signs of their huge potential during the second half in Cardiff but that a poor start again hindered their chances of success.
“It’s disappointing,” added Charteris.
“It was two interception tries that have cost us and our errors rather than their brilliance. That makes it that much more frustrating, really.
“I think we just threw it away in the first half. I felt we were coming back and could have won it at the end. We just feel that if we don’t dig ourselves into these holes at the beginning we will win these games.
“I think we played some good rugby at times out there but, until we start doing that for 80 minutes, we’re not going to beat the teams with the quality of France.
“The France game has gone now – we’ve lost it and there’s nothing we can do about that now, unfortunately. We’ve got to pick ourselves up and re-evaluate and refocus.
“We’ve got to prove to ourselves we can play for the full 80 minutes and cut out the errors that are costing us.”