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Press Notes | George Skivington: “In terms of growth as a team, we need to focus on ourselves more than anything”

“In terms of growth as a team, we need to focus on ourselves more than anything.”

George Skivington faced the press ahead of Gloucester Rugby’s visit to London Irish this weekend. The Head Coach reflected on the loss to Northampton Saints, the poor run of results and facing his old club on Saturday.  

Reflecting on the Northampton result

“We’ve certainly gone down the honest conversations route. We did some good stuff and we put ourselves into a position to go on and win the game and as I said after the game, there was some clocking off and we’ve looked at that and that’s something for our younger and less experienced players have to understand. This is an 80 minute game and in the Premiership if you clock off it can cost you 7 points which it did for us a couple of times at the weekend.”

Sticking to the process

“We’ve stripped everything back and have made some massive changes in the background. The squad is very different to what it’s been previously and we’re working extremely hard to pull it all together and make strives that we think will be sustainable and successful in the future. Nobody could be working any harder or be more focused. These things take time.

“We’re very process driven. We knew that there would be some pain to suffer. Is it fun going through the pain? No. But it is the reality of it so that’s where we’re at. Hopefully the tide will turn and we will get some results.”

Facing former club, London Irish

“I’m looking forward to seeing the stadium because I never actually saw it! I played a part in building where they are now over a good few years and I’ve got a lot of friends there and I look forward to seeing them and getting stuck in and having a good game of rugby.

“Obviously, I know the players, there are a few new faces in there but for the most part I know the players. You do enough analysis on every team that you understand how they are going to play. Breaking it down and stopping it is a completely different side to it. Where we are right now in terms of growth as a team, we need to focus on ourselves more than anything."

On Irish’s results

“They’re playing great rugby and I played a part in that process over the last few years. A few years ago it was pretty painful work at Irish, getting the process and the foundations in place. Now, they are really prospering from that period and they’re in good form.”

On recent results

"At the very beginning of this process we knew the squad looked different, the coaching staff looked different. We sat down and said ‘do we go for an approach where we just tick along or do we rip it up and go with the processes that we believe will be successful in the long run and get young Gloucester lads on the pitch?’ and we’ve chosen to do that.

“We sat as a group and said that this will be painful. These things will always come with a little bit of stone throwing and you’ve got to be strong in what you believe is right. Things get thrown up all the time with injuries and we’ve had one or two public things that we hadn’t been expecting and that’s the nature of the beast.

“We’re going through the process we knew we’d go through, and we knew it was going to be painful. That doesn’t make it any less painful. It’s hard work but we keep pushing forward.”  

Lloyd Evans & Santiago Carreras

"Lloyd's not great. He'll need to see a specialist before we can start to plan his return to play, but we will be without him for a period for sure. As for Santiago, he obviously had a HIA at the weekend so has been going through the protocols required for him to return to action."

Giorgi Kveseladze 

"Giorgi has settled in well, he's been in for a week or so now, and is learning the plays, learning about the club and he has been brilliant so far. He's a bundle of energy and he wants to work hard. It's always a challenge for guys when they are a long way from home but it is a good welcoming group here so, so far, so good!"

George Skivington looks ahead to London Irish

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