DARCY Graham lamented Edinburgh’s soft underbelly after their collapse against Zebre and insists the cure to his team’s maddening inconsistency lies in cutting down the individual error count.
The capital club led by 10 points at the break during Friday’s Pro14 clash in Parma but buckled in spectacular fashion in the second half as the hosts rallied to claim a 34-16 bonus point victory.
Graham, who scored Edinburgh’s only try after 20 minutes, was left frustrated by a performance that came less than a week after his side had stunned three-time European champions Toulon with a 40-14 Champions Cup win at Murrayfield.
“It’s two steps forward and then another step back,” he said. “The soft underbelly. We should’ve never been in that position. We were in control first half and then second half there were far too many individual mistakes which let them get back in the game.
“We talked about not giving them energy to feed off and that’s exactly what we let them do. It’s just individual errors in key moments. A missed tackle, a dropped ball, it’s killing us.
“It’ll come with more games, it was young boys and senior boys all making mistakes, so we just need to cut that out of our game and be squeaky clean the whole 80 minutes like we were last week.”
Graham was one of seven Edinburgh players starting in Parma to have spent the week leading up to the game in the Scotland training camp.
Coach Richard Cockerill has expressed his frustration at the limited preparation time, with Scotland players only being released from international duty during the week of a Pro14 game.
“It’s quite a disruptive week, we never got a chance to all be together until we got here on Thursday,” said Graham. “But we’re good enough players that it shouldn’t matter, there’s class in the whole squad and we shouldn’t let that affect us or the game.”
Regarding his Scotland prospects, he added: “I’m not looking too far ahead, I’ll try and improve every week and in Scotland camp I’m trying to learn from the world class players there.
“It’s a great environment, I’m loving it and learning so much. There’s a lot of information thrown at you but I’m really enjoying it. I want to get in there as often as I can and learn as much as I can.”
Source : HeraldScotland