Positive mindset endures for Vea

Monday 08 February 2016 Written by: Adam

Taione Vea says confidence remains high within the Newcastle Falcons ahead of this week home game against Leicester Tigers, despite the disappointment of a narrow loss away to Wasps last Saturday.

Vea was part of a Falcons pack that laid a solid platform in the face of driving wind and rain at the Ricoh Arena, going toe to toe with a vaunted Wasps eight and getting the team to within touching distance of a worthy away win.

Despite earning plaudits for the tenacity and commitment shown, Vea states the overwhelming emotion post match was one of disappointment.

“There was a lot of disappointment, we had grinded out a long shift and we went out there planning to do what we did against Quins. We had put plans into place all week, and we’d worked on our self-belief and really had confidence there.”

“We’d planned on getting a win and considering we were on top for most of the game, for things to come down to a few little things not going our way and such small details it’s disappointing. Coming away with a bonus point isn’t the worst, but it’s not what we had set out for as a target.”

Be that as it may, the Falcons pack were once again formidable opponents in all facets of the game, with the only try of the afternoon coming from a superb drive from an attacking line out early in the first half.

With the maul proving a potent weapon for the Falcons and their defence of opposition drives proving particularly effective and resilient, Vea gives credit to scrum coach Micky Ward and the way he has his eight thinking.

“Micky has been doing, trying to get the pack into a pack mentality. In season’s past, people have come up against us particularly at home and thought of us as a tough team to play because of the conditions. What we’re trying to change is to get teams into a mentality that we’re going to be a tough pack and that it’s going to be a dogfight whether they are playing us at home or away and that whatever conditions, that we are a pack that are going to front up.”

“Micky has definitely got us into a mentality that we aren’t going to let people see us as a weakness or an area to get easy outs of. I think it’s definitely a heads down to work attitude and although it’s maybe taken a little bit of time to come together, but the mix of old and young that are in there is getting there now. For myself, in the past four to six weeks there has been a definite change in the mentality at the club that started with that win over Bath.”

Looking ahead to the game this Friday, the visit of Leicester Tigers is seen as another opportunity to keep the team’s attitude determined and healthy and to keep adding to the Aviva Premiership Rugby points tally.

“We needed to deliver points, not just for the fans or for the club, but for ourselves, we’re putting a lot of work in and a lot of time, as are the coaching staff, so it’s about time things started to pull through for us.”

“The boys are still up for it and the next two weeks we are at home so they are definitely games that we will be targeting as a group.”

“Tigers will be a big challenge, as will Northampton, as will Bath, but they are ones that we are all looking forward to. Expectations have gotten that much higher in the group now because of the belief in the squad.”