Pro12: Al Kellock wants Glasgow to reach 2014/15 final

Pro12: Glasgow Warriors captain Al Kellock wants his side to reach the final next season after their narrow Leinster loss

Glasgow Warriors captain Al Kellock Photo: Jason O’Callaghan

Al Kellock is already eyeing a place in next season’s Pro12 final after Saturday’s defeat by Leinster.

The Glasgow Warriors captain was at pains to stress how proud he was of the effort to reach their first final after two successive, narrow semi-final defeats by Leinster in Dublin.

e’ve got to keep pushing forward, and if we lose a final to win one next year, then you would take that

Al Kellock

And, after the 34-12 loss at the RDS, Kellock insists the Scottish club have to push forward again if they want to go one better.

“We wanted desperately to win that for everybody involved,” Kellock said. “Because we’ve lost it, we can’t let the good work that has gone in—not only on the park, but the good work in building this club—we can’t let it slip.

“We spoke in the changing room about how we need to use this again the way we’ve used these semi-final losses and pushed forward. We’ve got to keep pushing forward, and if we lose a final to win one next year, then you would take that.”

The 32-year-old, who will be able to rest up over the summer after failing to make the Scotland squad for their four-match tour of the Americas and South Africa, paid tribute to Leinster—playing in a fifth consecutive Pro12 final—who know what it takes to win, having secured their fourth title, equalling the Ospreys for most titles.

“On the day the better team won,” he added. “It’s hard to take because we went out with the intention of playing the way we have been playing [all season] and we didn’t execute, but we’ve got to be proud of the effort it’s taken to get us here.

“It hurts to lose a semi-final, and it hurts more to lose a final. Credit to Leinster, we made too many mistakes. They were clinical.

“The fact we knocked the ball on was a mistake when we were going for a try and they’ve taken advantage that we’ve done that. That’s smart rugby by them and poor by us.”

Despite the winning margin, Kellock believes that the Warriors could still have snatched a win with the score at 20-12 with five minutes to go before Leinster’s late brace of tries put the result beyond doubt.

“There were a few key points in the game where we needed to get a break and I believe we pushed them really hard,” he said. “The scoreline was comfortable, but if we got the right break at the right time, we could have gone on and won that.

“When we went out after half-time, that was the time to start controlling it, but we didn’t manage to, but you’ve got to credit Leinster and the way they controlled the territory.

“I don’t know what the stats were in the second half, but whenever we seemed to get into their half we made an error and that just made it easy for them.

“We will analyse the game, we will look at what we’ve got to do to get better. The emotion I’m trying to force is the pride in the effort that’s gone in. What a two weeks it has been: to win that game against Munster, the build-up, the fans on the way into the ground were incredible. That makes it hurt even more, but we have to push forward.”

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