MIKE Ford is prepared to let Bath’s opponents worry about their attacking capabilities and has given up concentrating on the headaches other sides can cause.
Bath continued their charge on all fronts as they claimed a 24-6 win over Newcastle Falcons at the Rec last weekend and are in Aviva Premiership again tomorrow when they travel to Exeter Chiefs (3.15pm).
Head coach Ford says his team won’t shirk away from the challenge of clinching a positive result at Sandy Park and insists that Bath will be fully focussed on their own performance.
“We’re just focussing on ourselves and how we get better. Exeter are a fantastic side, that play a great brand of rugby, but at the same time, we’re trying to improve what we’re doing – possibly last year, it was focussed too much on the opposition and trying to stop them,” he said.
“We’re trying to figure out how we can play better with the ball and a big focus for us this year is attack with the ball in hand.
“We just want to get better every day – some days it doesn’t happen but 90 per cent of the time, we’ve done that every day.
“We know that to win competitions, we have to score so many points so we’re focussing on attack more so and saying to the opposition ‘we’re going to score a certain amount of points and you’re going to have to do well against our defence to score more than us’.
“Again, we feel we’ve only scratched the surface on attack as well – that’s the exciting part of this year.
“We’ve got the personnel in the squad to look at the game differently and play differently and it’s very, very early days.
“We’re not sure where we’re going because it’s not been done before but the boys are excited by that.”
Ford added: “We think (Exeter) will be desperate because they’ve only won one game in the last six Premiership-wise and they feel that against the better teams they’ve been unlucky losers.
“They’ve not beaten Bath yet in the Premiership and they’re playing at Sandy Park – they’ve got loads of reasons to try and get the monkey off their back and play well.
“They lose this one to us and the gap to the top four gets even bigger. They’ll be seeing this as their cup final, without a question.
“But we’ve got to view the game the same and we’ve got to change it and talk about our motivation, why we want to do well and why we want to win – it’s just as great, if not greater.”
NEWS FROM BATH'S AVIVA PREMIERSHIP CLASH AT EXETER ON SATURDAY AT WILTSHIRETIMES.CO.UK/SPORT