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Allen Clarke

Ospreys head coach Allen Clarke

Clarke and Ospreys ready for huge occasion

Ospreys head coach Allen Clarke has revealed his team are fighting fit for their crunch Heineken Champions Cup play-off clash with the Scarlets.

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Clarke’s men will boast home advantage for the winner-takes-all Liberty Stadium clash on Saturday evening (kick-off 7.45pm).

Whoever comes out on top will seal a place in the Champions Cup – European rugby’s premier club competition – for next season.

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It’s a challenge Clarke and the Ospreys are relishing.

“We’re in a pretty good state of affairs. We have a healthy squad. There are a couple of boys with long-term injuries, but other than that we’ve a good deck to pick from,” said Clarke.

“It’s a real testament to everybody involved. The boys are in a good state physically and importantly they’re in a good state.

“The derby football has always been fantastic all season and in the couple of years I’ve been here. I’ve no doubt it’ll be another tough affair on Saturday.

“If you look at the games between the two sides over the last couple of years they’ve been one-score games. We’re under no illusions as to the level of performance that is going to be required on Saturday. For us it’s about focusing on what we do well. Obviously we play the Scarlets and they’re good men down there as well.

“I’ve come across a few of them in my time here and I’ve a lot of respect of what they’ve achieved. But I know we’ve got a good team also and the battles on the field will be immense.

“It’s likely to be fine margins. We just hope that whatever we do, we leave everything out on the field.”

The Ospreys have had a fine end to the season, claiming back-to-back victories over the Cheetahs and Southern Kings on their tour of South Africa.

They then ended the regular Guinness PRO14 season with a thrilling Judgement Day success over Cardiff Blues at the home of Welsh rugby – Principality Stadium.

Now only the Scarlets – traditionally their biggest and definitely closest rivals – stand between them and reaching the Champions Cup.

A bumper crowd is expected at the Liberty Stadium for the game.

“You’ve seen over the last number of weeks there’s been a real buzz in our squad. We’ve come off four wins on the bounce since the Six Nations period,” Clarke added.

“We’ve really come up on the rails to get to this position and we want to make sure that we don’t trip ourselves up on the way.”

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Clarke and Ospreys ready for huge occasion
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Clarke and Ospreys ready for huge occasion
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Clarke and Ospreys ready for huge occasion
Clarke and Ospreys ready for huge occasion
Clarke and Ospreys ready for huge occasion
Clarke and Ospreys ready for huge occasion
Clarke and Ospreys ready for huge occasion
Clarke and Ospreys ready for huge occasion
Clarke and Ospreys ready for huge occasion
Clarke and Ospreys ready for huge occasion
Clarke and Ospreys ready for huge occasion
Clarke and Ospreys ready for huge occasion
Clarke and Ospreys ready for huge occasion
Clarke and Ospreys ready for huge occasion