Cardiff Rugby director of rugby Dai Young is looking for his side to capitalise on their home EPCR Challenge Cup Round of 16 draw against Sale Sharks on Saturday and take another step to winning the trophy for the third time.
Young is keen for the Welsh region, Challenge Cup winners in 2010 and 2018, to build on their fine record in the competition, but first he is expecting a physical challenge from one of the Gallagher Premiership’s form teams, following their relegation from the Heineken Champions Cup.
He said: “It’s a great occasion to be in the knockout stages of Europe again. We have a proud history in the Challenge Cup, we have won it twice, so we would like to extend that history and do well in the competition.
“We’re playing against a very good Sale team. We’ve seen how well they are playing. They are packed with size and power, and it’s something we have to match.
“If we can match that physicality, if we can control the gain-line, then hopefully we can play the game we want to play. First and foremost, gain-line efficiency is key on both sides of the ball and then it’s matching their physicality.”
𝔾𝔸𝕄𝔼 𝕎𝔼𝔼𝕂 👊
What #ChallengeCupRugby quarter-final match ups would you love to see? 🤩 pic.twitter.com/RLCEEWWb43
— EPCR Challenge Cup (@ChallengeCup_) March 27, 2023
Young is hoping to be helped along the way by another large crowd at the Arms Park.
He added: “Home advantage is massive. Nobody enjoys coming to the Arms Park. Everyone knows we’re difficult to beat there and I’m hoping we get a big crowd.
“The crowd has been fantastic this year, really vocal, right behind us and the players will really look forward to that.”