Robbie Diack admitted he was happy with the result but not the performance as Ulster laboured to a 26-3 win over Zebre to preserve their seven point lead at the top of the Pro12 table.
Diack scored two of Ulster’s four tries and gave a man of the match display.
“We are happier than last week but there were a lot of mistakes and a lot of turnovers, our lineout was a lot better, the scrum was constant and the exciting thing was there was a lot of energy out there but we were that one inch off,” said Diack.
“If we can just cut out the mistakes we’ll be very hard to contend with, we’re making life easy for the opposition and that is not doing us any favours.
“Zebre lived off our scraps and we made it difficult for ourselves and when we got into good positions we just gave it away.
“We had 20 turn overs which just isn’t acceptable, if we want to go forward from here and next week we’re playing Glasgow away which is a top of the table clash and it is going to be incredibly tough and if we play like we did against Zebre we’ll make life very difficult for ourselves.
“We need to tighten up on our offloads and just be patient with the ball.
“We get to the second or third phase and we think there is a 50/50 chance we just need to hold onto the ball and take teams through a couple more phases, we just need to put sides under more pressure.
“After last week we wanted to play a more exciting brand of rugby and we have the players to do it, we tried it the energy was there and the enthusiasm was there but we just have to play through the phases.”
Diack believed it was important to get maximum points.
“We did set out to get the bonus point and we got that but we are not happy with the way we played and the positive is we got the five points.”
Diack can place anywhere in the back five of the pace but seemed to relish playing at No8.
“I enjoy playing at eight or anywhere in the back row but I’m just glad to be involved in this team.
“No8 is different because I don’t think you get as many ball carries as you do at No6 because you’re involved in the first down quite a lot but I did enjoy it.”
Diack give credit for both his scores to centre Darren Cave.
“I think it was more down to Darren’s good work than mine I just put the ball down over the line.
“Cavey did a lot hard work and ran some great lines, so it made my life easy I just had to catch it and dot it down, all credit to the backs I thought they were fantastic. They ran great lines and defended well really well.”