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Maisashvili: Game management Georgia’s ‘main issue’

Maisashvili: Game management Georgia’s ‘main issue’

Maisashvili: Game management Georgia’s ‘main issue’

Georgia head coach Levan Maisashvili believes his side’s game management must improve if they are to compete with the top teams in the Autumn Nations Cup.

The Lelos were defeated 40-0 by England in their opening contest of the new tournament in just their third ever meeting with the reigning Guinness Six Nations champions.

It was Georgia’s second loss of the autumn following their 48-7 defeat to Scotland in a warm-up game at BT Murrayfield as the Red Rose ran in six tries at Twickenham on Saturday.

And while Maisashvili was encouraged by the improvements his side made from the Scotland game, he highlighted a number of areas where they can still be better going forward.

“We controlled the ball more against England than with Scotland, but unfortunately it did not reflect on the final score and we are very disappointed for this,” he said.

“Game management still remains our main issue, which is logical against such strong opposition as England. If we had made correct decisions, we would have scored points as we had one or two good moments during the game. But we failed to grab that moment.

“Unfortunately, we are still weak around set piece and static phases – we failed to kick to touch from penalty three times, and twice from our 22. Possibly due to nervousness and lack of experience.

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“We have to learn to use those chances to score, as we won’t have many chances like that against strong opposition. There have been enough opportunities against England, but we failed to use them.

“Also we crossed the gain line several times, but could not do anything after that.

“That’s maybe because we sometimes lack that boldness with much stronger teams, as they’re different from the teams we usually play at Rugby Europe Championship.

“Games against strong opposition should bring the experience and that boldness which should allow us to pressure such opponents.”

Georgia’s next Group A fixture is against Wales in Llanelli, with Wayne Pivac’s side coming into the contest on the back of six consecutive defeats themselves after losing to Ireland in Round 1.

Maisashvili is hopeful that the experience of playing against Scotland and England will only help his team’s chances at the Parc y Scarlets – although he warned his players to not be misguided by Wales’ recent run of form.

“All things considered, we were slightly better in maul compared to the Scotland game,” he added.

“But this still remains a challenge for us. We have more time to train during this week and I am sure there will be some progress [in the game against Wales].

“I expect Wales to be more diverse in their attacks than they usually are.

“Although the Welsh team is practically the same as at the last Rugby World Cup, and though they don’t look as good as they used to, we should not let ourselves be misguided by their latest results.

“They have way more options in attack compared to England and we should expect more surprises in static phases, so we have to think more about defence too.”

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