Wasps staring into the abyss
January 18, 2011
Tony Hanks has admitted that Wasps face an uphill struggle © Getty Images
Wasps are bidding for a place in the quarter-finals of the Heineken Cup for the first time since winning the title in 2007, but director of rugby Tony Hanks has admitted that they face an uphill task following last weekend's loss to Glasgow.
The Aviva Premiership side must beat four-time champions Toulouse at Adams Park on Sunday to stand any chance of making the last eight as a best runner-up, although even then they will need a favourable roll of the dice from other fixtures.
Toulouse have already booked their passage into the knockout stages, where they have been joined by Northampton, Leinster and Toulon.
"We have made it incredibly difficult for ourselves," Hanks said. "Now we have to rely on other results while for us the bare minimum is to get a win - we simply have to beat Toulouse.
"It is still a home game, it is still a Heineken Cup game and there is still a lot to play for. We are a team and a club full of ambition and now we've made it very difficult to get through.
"Obviously we can't catch Toulouse but then all the Amlin permutations and everything else will come into play. But forget all that - this is about fronting up and playing well at home against Toulouse."
Hanks is also keen to repay the club's supporters following the disappointment of their 20-10 loss at Firhill.
"I feel sorry for the supporters who travelled up to Glasgow," he said. "I know they are as disappointed as we are - it is not what we wanted to give them. It was unacceptable by our standards and we all to need to look at the reasons why and reflect on those. But there's no point us sitting around sulking for too long.
"We've got a good crowd coming to the Toulouse match who were expecting more in Glasgow and believed that the game against Toulouse would decide the Pool. We've got to repay them on Sunday with a performance and all we can do is make sure we respond. There's a lot of battered egos and battered pride. You have good days and bad and we timed it really badly to have a poor day."
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