Eric Elwood has been left to reflect on missed opportunities as Connacht head into the RaboDirect PRO12 two-week break on the back of a third straight away defeat.
Connacht made an impressive start to the season with back-to-back wins over Treviso and the Scarlets and while they have won both their matches at the Sportsground, they have since run out of steam.
Last weekend Elwood’s men let a 20-8 half-time lead slip away to Leinster, eventually going down 30-20, leaving Connacht seventh in the table.
Connacht do not feature again in the league until October 29 – by which time Tonga’s Fetu’u Vainikolo, fly-half Miah Nikora as well as Tiernan O’Halloran and Eoin Griffin could all be back from injury.
But Elwood admitted his disappointment at failing to steal a march on his side’s rivals, who will soon be able to welcome back their World Cup absentees.
“We set ourselves a target – a combination of points and place where we wanted to be at this stage – and we didn’t achieve it,” said Elwood.
“Part of our development and one of goals is to be competitive home and away. Having one win away from home every year is not good enough – it’s not acceptable in this league.
“We had opportunities in those three away games – against Edinburgh, the Ospreys and against Leinster, and we didn’t take them.
“Whether it is the development of the lads, their inexperience in getting through tight games, manipulating the weather conditions, we don’t know.
“It’s disappointing because we should have been higher up the table to take advantage of teams during the World Cup.”