Cai Griffiths happy to extend stay with Ospreys
CAI Griffiths says he wouldn't be averse to turning his loan spell at the Ospreys into a permanent move.
The 6ft 2in, 18st 12lb prop from Caernarfon answered an SOS from the Liberty Stadium region over Christmas, with his club London Irish allowing him to return to Swansea until the end of the season.
Griffiths has played in six games since, five of which the Ospreys have won, and his heart is still in the region.
The ex-Neath player, who had a nine-year spell with the Ospreys before heading for London Irish, was asked whether he would say no to retracing his steps when his deal with Irish expires at the end of the season.
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"No, the Ospreys are a great region," he said.
"I've been here for ten years and it's a special place.
"What Steve Tandy and Jonathan Humphreys are saying behind the scenes, it looks like they want to go places. It's always been a successful region and as a player you want to be part of a successful side.
"I'm on loan here, maybe until the end of the season, depending on London Irish's injury situation over the rest of the campaign. I signed for only the one year for them, so as it stands I'm out of contract next season. I'll just play my game and leave it to my agent to sort things out."
Griffiths has done well since returning, his display against Ulster at Ravenhill particularly notable, the tight-head putting in ten tackles, carrying the ball strongly and helping to dominate the opposition scrum.
At 29, he has brought experience to the set-up and helped cushion the blow of the region being without Adam Jones at a key point in the season.
"It's been good," he said.
"I've been playing quite a bit and enjoying it. I know the way we play: it hasn't changed much since last year. It's just good to be back — like coming back into old slippers, if you like."
Griffiths continued: "The effort from the boys over the past month has been outstanding.
"When I returned I could sense there was a buzz here. Everyone knows the game plan inside out and a key reason we've been going away and getting results is that Tandy, Gruff Rees and Humphreys have been showing us the way to play in those particular games, which game pattern to use.
"It's been working, and this weekend we will go to Munster looking for a win."
The Ospreys have left themselves with little scope to drop points over the rest of the season, with a tough run-in that will see them play four of their remaining six games on the road.
That said, there are worse times to be playing Munster.
Usually such a force, the former league champions were pounded 34-10 by Treviso last week, a week after losing 18-10 to the Scarlets.
They are in the Heineken Cup quarter-finals, however, and remain hard to beat at home and particularly in Limerick.
"It's always a dangerous place to go," said Griffiths.
"Munster are a quality side, no matter what team they put out and whether it's in the Six Nations window or outside it.
"We not taking too much notice of their recent results.
"Sometimes it doesn't happen for a number of games and you can't put your finger on what is going wrong. Then, bang — you turn it around, get four tries and forget what's happened in the previous couple of weeks. We just hope it will not be this weekend because we are desperate for a win ourselves.
"We have to go there, put pressure on them and hopefully come home with the points.
"We don't see it as knocking Munster back in the play-off race. We're just looking to go there and do a job on them. It's about ourselves, not anyone else."
Griffiths was unsurprised at the way Adam Jones responded in Italy after a week of criticism following his effort against France.
"You can't write a player of his calibre off on the basis of one performance," said Griffiths. " You could see his quality in Italy."