Johannesburg - Lions coach Dick Muir may be the eternal optimist, but he truly believes that there is “light at the end of the tunnel” for the bottom-dwellers in the Super 14.
Muir is not perturbed by the fact the Lions could equal the record of the worst run in Super rugby history if they fail to beat the Western Force at Coca Cola Park this weekend.
The Lions have already lost all 10 their matches in this year’s competition and unless they can pull off their first victory this weekend will go on to equal Heyneke Meyer’s solemn record of 11 straight losses in 2002 with the Bulls.
But the Lions could end off worse than that, with two more matches after this one and set a new record for the competition, something that Muir is keen to avoid.
Despite the negative record, Muir was still smiling, giving out a positive message as he announced his team for the Force match.
“The attitude in the camp is surprisingly good,” Muir said, “Maybe because we’re used to picking the guys up after the sadness of not getting the result the week before. There is still an excitement amongst the guys and to me it comes from the realization that the win we’re looking for is that much closer now.
“The record is not necessarily something we are concentrating on, but we will always be reminded of it. But even though it is there, I wouldn’t be so positive if I couldn’t see the light at the end of the end of the tunnel and I think that is what is keeping the players positive. They see that light as well.”
Muir added that the Force had shown after a bad start just what a single victory could do for the side and he hoped they would achieve it this weekend.
“We’ve seen a side like the Force and Sharks who were in similar positions to us bouncing back after a string of losses. We’re looking forward to bouncing back sometime soon. We thought last week after 40 minutes that we would bounce back against the Bulls, we thought “this is our day” but the Bulls showed the power and experience to outmuscle us and run away with it in the end.”