Rees lays down backs challenge

12 August 2017 06:56:38 EST

Ospreys coach Gruff Rees has challenged the backs to develop their decision-making as they look to improve on last season's fourth place finish.

Steve Tandy's men played an exciting brand of rugby in 2016-17 but came up short towards the end of the campaign.

They were eventually beaten in the semi-finals of the Guinness Pro 12 23-3 by Munster, having struggled to find their attacking game over the 80 minutes.

As an attack coach for the team, I want to challenge the decision-making of players.

Gruff Rees

With their younger players a year older, Rees is hoping that they can develop their skill-sets over the coming season.

"We perhaps had a superficial confidence that we could keep playing and it was reckless at times," he said. "I don't point the fingers at individual players per se, it's a collective and us as coaches have got to give them the tools of when to run, pass or kick.

"There are games where we clearly ignored the kick space and the smart things to do. You then get punished around the next phase of play and you're defending in areas we shouldn't really be defending.

"As an attack coach for the team, I want to challenge the decision-making of players and I think we want players to be able to think on their feet, understand the pictures and communicate those pictures.

"Within that ideology, we've got to give them a framework of play that gives them the opportunity to understand where they are on the pitch, what they see in front of them and then to run, pass or kick."

Ospreys are 10/1 to win the Guinness Pro 14 this season, with Munster 3/1.

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