Sam Parry may have been the history maker as Ospreys demolished Zebre 59-5 in their Guinness PRO12 opener but the hooker refused to get carried away with his contribution.
Gavin Henson, Shane Williams and Tommy Bowe have all scored a PRO12 treble for the Ospreys but Parry became the first forward to score a hat-trick for the Welsh province in a competitive game.
The Ospreys ran in eight tries during their win over the Italians and the Welsh region had the try bonus point wrapped up at half-time after tries from Parry, Lloyd Ashley and Ashley Beck, with Sam Davies adding the extras.
Tommaso d’Apice struck back before the break; before Parry scored his third rolling maul try following a line-out. Ben John and Dafydd Howells added further scores for the Pro12 leaders.
“It feels very special to become the first Ospreys forward to record a hat-trick of tries in the PRO12 but I can’t really take any credit for the scores though,” said Parry.
“The boys up front did the damage, they set the platform and I was just able to flop over.
“We have worked hard over the summer and wanted to make our driving maul a real weapon, it’s good to see in our first game that worked so well and we have been able to use it so positively.
“Next week away at Connacht will be a totally different ball game though; they’re a tough team to face especially at their own place. We look forward to the challenge.”
The Ospreys were missing a host of international star names, including Scott Baldwin, Dan Lydiate, Alun Wyn Jones, James King and Dan Biggar.
The absence of their Welsh internationals did little to prevent a first class showing from the Ospreys and boss Steve Tandy was left purring at the performance.
“We have confidence in our playing group,” said Tandy. “Some people probably want some of our senior internationals back a bit quicker but we have total trust in our playing group.
“What last season taught us is you only get experience by playing. The likes of Olly Cracknell, Rory Thornton, Sam Underhill and Scott Otten have all got a season under their belts and despite being young men, have gained good experience.
“Look at where Rory is now – his lineout, his speed of delivery and his skill. He played a hell of a lot of games last year and he is only 21 years old.
“It was pretty pleasing to get five points in the first home game of the season. Zebre never gave up and were pretty physical but the boys kept going.
“There are a couple of things we need to tidy up, but out intent to play and shift the ball on occasions was very positive indeed.”
Guinness PRO12 Final 2017 Ticket Information: Fans can save up to 20% on selected tickets, and prices start at just €30 adults and €5 child, and be booked via www.ticketmaster.ie. For further information visit http://www.pro12rugby.com/final
1 Sep 2016
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