Ireland winger Andrew Trimble was delighted to be among the try scorers as Ulster rejuvenated their European Champions Cup ambitions with a bonus point win over four times champions Toulouse at Kingspan Stadium.
Trimble got the second of Ulster’s five tries for only his second touch down of the season and also topped the ‘metres made’ stats with 83 in the game.
“Once you hit 31 and you haven’t played rugby in a year, I’d only scored one try this season and if you are not scoring tries as a winger you have to do a lot of unseen work.
“I don’t want to be one of those wingers, you have to be getting over the gain line, making breaks, offloading and making tries so it is very pleasing just to get back on the score sheet.
“To get back to feeling confident, feeling fast and my footwork is a little more dynamic than it has been.
“I have been threatening to produce little glimpses of how I feel I should be playing.
“It was only a couple of years ago when I felt I was producing the best rugby of my career that just doesn’t disappear, coming back from injury it is difficult to get your head space right.
“It was quite new to me because I haven’t found myself in too much open space recently.
“It was a little flashback to 2006 when I got a bit of space against Toulouse. I think the reason our backs haven’t found as much space as we would like is we haven’t had the conditions for it.
“The last three or four weeks have been brutal and tonight was the night everything was prefect and we had no excuses and we had to go out and play the rugby that suits us and express ourselves.
“I think it is important to get the crowd going again because we haven’t given them much to cheer about and they have been a little bit quiet as a result of that.
“We played with lots of width and ambition and we turned the screw and once we got the four tries we kept going and then we kept our line in tact at the end.”
The maximum point win lifted Ulster above the French side and Les Kiss’s men have a game in hand.
“We never talked about the five points during the week, we really emphasised the process and play with the style of rugby that we are capable of.
“I think we were effective and clinical. We scored tries at the right time and then it was very important to nil them just for a little bit of mental baggage that they might carry into next week.”
Trimble was happy with the overall performance.
“Our defence was reasonably comfortably at the end, it was difficult for them to keep playing as they didn’t have much to play for but that is not the Toulouse we are going to see next week, we done a lot of hard work early on and were very patient in defence and they were going nowhere, our defence was very good and we showed a lot of ambition in attack and went out the back quite a bit and stretched them, it was a massive Toulouse pack there are a lot of big boys and a lot of big ball carriers and they had the potential to do what Saracens done to us and outmuscle us so you have to shift them about and we managed that.”
The sides meet again on Sunday and Trimble is wary of a backlash from a wounded Toulouse.
“I’m sure Les and Doaky will have something up their sleeves and a few of us have a few ideas as well and we probably learned something from tonight there were a few ways we got joy and a few ways we didn’t, hopefully it will be something similar.”
“We have seen this before in 2006 we gave them a hiding but they are a completely didn’t side when they are at home, we have got to go over there and produce a massive performance, we have to be clever, we have to be ambitious and they will play a different game plan at home, we’ll expect a backlash they wouldn’t be happy with 38-0, these back to back games it happens every year in this competition they are completely different.”
“It is important we get our homework right and go again.”