New Ospreys defence coach Brad Davies has warned his players to expect a challenging pre-season as he looks to cement their position as the best defence in Wales and inspire a surge up the Guinness PRO12 table.
Ospreys conceded the fewest points of the four Welsh regions in the Guinness PRO12 last term, yet finished in eighth position behind Scarlets and Cardiff Blues.
Keen to strive for improvement, head coach Steve Tandy convinced Davies to leave Wasps for south Wales.
And Davies is determined to make his mark, even if it risks spoiling the squad’s summer.
“Players are going to be taken out of their comfort zone, challenged in a whole different way of thinking and so far everyone out on the training field has tried to embrace that,” Davies told the South Wales Evening Post.
“But Ospreys' success or failure isn't going to be determined solely by defence, all the pieces of the jigsaw have to slot in together and support each other.
“If we are going to play a brand of rugby that is going to be exciting for the players to play, the coaches to watch and supporters to enjoy, I have got to set up a defence that if we do turn over the ball, the opposition are going to have to work their socks off to get across that white line.
“So far, I have been really impressed with the attitude and application to try and deliver that.
“Steve has given me a brief about some of the changes he would like to make and what stood out for me, when I looked at footage, is that I never saw a lack of effort, I never saw a lack of fire from these players.
"I know it is still early days, but I have already seen a real application to deliver what I am trying to put in place.
"I want to set up a defensive unit that is going to be really difficult to break down.
"I want us to be proactive in our defence because we want to get the ball back and play the brand of attacking rugby the Ospreys want to play.”
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