London Welsh head coach Justin Burnell was a satisfied man after seeing the Exiles kick-off their pre-season with a 64-0 win over Henley Hawks at Dry Leas.
But Burnell is acutely aware that there are tougher tests to come.
Giving debuts to a number of the Club’s summer signings, Welsh ran in ten tries and now face Wasps next Sunday at Adams Park.
“I thought it was a good blow out,” said Burnell. “Wherever you go, to score ten tries is always pleasing, but the most important factor was keeping the opposition to nil.
“It’s the start of the pre-season process, the first step on the ladder, and a bigger challenge next week in Wasps.
“To come away with minimum injuries, ten tries and a clean sheet is pleasing, but there is still a lot to work on in respect of the skill aspect.
“I thought we dropped too many balls and some of the passing just wasn’t accurate enough.
“When we go in to these bigger games that’s going to be the difference between winning and losing.”
Eight of those tries came in a clinical first-half display which saw Ben West and Rhys Crane both cross twice, with Adam Field, Elliot Kear, Nic Reynolds and Chris Elder all touching down.
“Rhys Crane looked really sharp and I thought James Down was man of the match today – I was really impressed with him,” added Burnell.
“As for some of the other new signings, Chris Elder looked confident and safe under the high ball and has a big physical presence.
“And some of those performances will now be rewarded and go in to the squad to play Wasps.”
Welsh’s second half tries came from Elder and James Lewis, but the Aviva Premiership new boys certainly didn’t have it all their own way in the second half as Henley grew in to the game and asked plenty of questions of the Welsh defence.
“It was scrappy in the second half. There were a lot of changes and it took the third batch of players that bit more time to get in to it,” said Burnell.
“In games like this when you get to a 50 point margin and all everyone can see is the 100 point margin, but you’ve got to give respect to Henley.
“They were outstanding. They worked hard and it was a great advert for the relationship between the two clubs.”
The Exiles now head to Adams Park next Sunday for what is sure to be a far sterner challenge.
“That will be a true indication of where we’re actually at,” said Burnell “We’ll be putting out the best team available as well as some of the boys who played today, and we’re really looking forward to the challenge.”
Do you want alerts delivered straight to your phone via our WhatsApp service? Text NEWS or SPORT or NEWS AND SPORT, depending on which services you want, and your full name to 07767 417704. Save our number into your phone’s contacts as Oxford Mail WhatsApp and ensure you have WhatsApp installed.
Latest Sport news
10:40am Wednesday 29th July 2015
Eddie Pepperell hosted some of the region’s top young golfers at Frilford Heath in what the European Tour player intends to be just the start of helping to encourage the next generation.
10:33am Wednesday 29th July 2015
CHRIS Allen believes there will be Oxford United players who will be unfortunate to miss out in the first XI when the season starts next month after overseeing a 4-0 win at Thame United last night.
9:00am Wednesday 29th July 2015
PATRICK Hoban scored twice as Oxford United eased past Thame United 4-0 in a pre-season friendly at the ASM Stadium.
8:10am Wednesday 29th July 2015
Triple jumper Nathan Douglas says his omission from the Great Britain team for next month’s IAAF World Championships in Beijing did not come as a surprise.
8:00am Wednesday 29th July 2015
Thame Town marched on at the top to maintain their Division 1 title charge with a crushing nine-wicket victory at home to Twyford on Saturday.
8:00am Wednesday 29th July 2015
ASHLEY Rump’s brilliant century for struggling Charlbury proved in vain as they lost by 82 runs at Westbury in Division 1.
6:20am Wednesday 29th July 2015
CRAIG Greenough’s 15-doll haul was not enough for Garsington Sports A as they lost 3-0 at home to New Club A, writes ANDY BEAL.
6:10am Wednesday 29th July 2015
ROSE Hill Club A crashed to a 2-1 defeat against Kennington Social Club to lose top spot in Section 2.
6:00am Wednesday 29th July 2015
FORMER Witney captain Jez Hicks admits he will miss playing for his hometown club, but says it is the right time to hang up his boots, writes Jack Johnson.
9:30am Tuesday 28th July 2015
Michael Appleton believes it is highly unlikely Oxford United will add to their squad before the start of the season.