Scarlets coach looks back on victory over Edinburgh
SCARLETS head coach Simon Easterby admitted he was relieved to see his side emerge with a tense 14-13 victory after an error-strewn display against struggling Edinburgh at Parc y Scarlets.
The West Wales region moved back into the top four play-off spots in the RaboDirect Pro12, but it was a far from convincing display from the home side.
Wing Andy Fenby scored an early try, but the Scots – who had gone into the match on the back of a 10-match losing run - hit back with a converted try from wing Dougie Fife and the boot of young fly-half Harry Leonard to lead 10-8 at half-time.
Another Leonard penalty gave Edinburgh a sniff of victory, but the visitors then spent most of the second half in defensive mode.
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Despite dominating possession and territory after the break, the Scarlets could only manage two more penalties, through fly-half Aled Thomas and his replacement Owen Williams.
And it needed a last-ditch tackle from Williams in the dying seconds to deny Edinburgh what could have been a match-winning score.
"I am delighted and very relieved with the win, because that could have been a loss. We might have lost that game a couple of months ago," said Easterby.
"We gave them far too much, our error count was shocking. We made life very difficult for ourselves.
"We went 8-0 up then made five errors in about 10 minutes. We failed to deal with the kick-off, kicked out on the full, knocked on and they were 10-8 without having done that much.
"In the second half we played in the right areas and challenged them up front, which we had identified beforehand.
"But whether it was that last pass, a poor decision or slowing the ball down unnecessarily, it meant they were able to stay in the game.
"We got far too little for all the possession we had in that second half.
"As I said, I am delighted to get the four points, but our performance was way, way below par."
With five matches remaining, three at home and the bottom two Zebre and Dragons (Millennium Stadium) away, the Scarlets have a great opportunity to make the play-offs for the first time.
Easterby added: "They are all winnable matches, although I am not setting any targets at this stage.
"We have had three wins from four in this little block which is very important going into the final period of matches.
"We have a couple of weeks off now and then go to Zebre and we will have to be far better than we were this evening.
"We are back in the top four, but not playing anywhere like a top-four side."
Scrum-half Aled Davies will be assessed over the coming days after limping off with an ankle injury in the first half.