Paul Tito has pin-pointed maturity as the reason for Cardiff Blues’ early success in the Magners League.
The Blues currently lie second, just one point adrift of leaders Munster after a solid start to the campaign.
They have chalked up impressive wins over Edinburgh, Newport Gwent Dragons, Benetton Treviso and Connacht, with their only defeat coming at the hands of last year’s Grand Finalists Leinster.
Their early league position is a far cry from last year where at the same point of the season they had lost four out of five games.
But despite getting points on the board, Blues captain Paul Tito insists they must improve their form and go up several gears.
“We have been solid rather than spectacular”, said Tito.
“The performance last week was disappointing but we still came away with four points. It's the sign of a maturing team.
“Last year we didn't get off to great start. This year we haven’t performed consistently but we have won and we are in a lot better position.”
The Blues may have had a poor start to last season but they still came within a point of a Play-Off place thanks to a stunning end-of-season run.
But if last term was undoubtedly the most competitive in Magners League history, Tito is convinced that the current campaign will be even tougher.
“I think the tournament has really come on,” added Tito.
“Obviously Connacht and the Italians are doing well. The Scarlets were the fourth team in Wales last year but look at them now; they are playing some fantastic rugby. They lost to the Ospreys last weekend but it was a game between two quality outfits.
“Everyone has raised their game this season and if you're in that top four at the end of the year then you’ve done pretty well.
“It's a lot better again this year and we have managed to win without playing great. We have been solid and it puts us in good stead in our push for the Play-Offs.”