RUGBY: Paddy Jackson confident Ulster can make Guinness PRO12 play-offs

Paddy Jackson
Paddy Jackson

Ireland international outhalf, Paddy Jackson, insists Ulster are serious contenders for a Guinness PRO12 top four finish.

A run of three straight losses and only four wins in 12 games has left the Province struggling in all competitions this season.

And although the focus on Saturday at Kingspan Stadium for the visit of Bordeaux in the European Champions Cup, Ulster are already looking ahead to turning their season around when they return to PRO12 action in two weeks.

Saturday’s pool five match is all about pride with Ulster and Bordeaux having no chance of making the knockout stages in Europe.

Ulster are looking for a win to boost confidence and gain some momentum ahead of the six massive games in the PRO12 during the Six Nations period.

Jackson, who will be on duty with Ireland, wants Ulster to end a disappointing European campaign on a high and then push on in the PRO12 where Ulster sit in sixth place.

“A performance is what we want and obviously the win. If we perform the win will come.

“Yes it is tough at the moment, off the back of a few defeats and not qualifying for the quarters (in Europe).

“We’ve met as a player group, and management, and we’ve had a few things to look at, a few harsh words among ourselves and there’s been a good reaction.

“To be honest where we want to see the reaction is on the pitch this weekend, the way we’ve trained this week, I think that’s what we’re going to get.

“I think the league is the focus now, it’s massive for us as a squad, that’s why this game is so important, so that we can get a bit of momentum and get back on the horse.

“Our sights are firmly set on that top four, the ambition in this club is still there.”