Edwards: The buck stops with me
HEAD coach Darren Edwards has taken full responsibility for the heaviest defeat in the history of Newport Gwent Dragons.
The region conceded eight tries to a Glasgow side shorn of their Scotland stars in a humiliating 60-3 RaboDirect Pro12 loss at Rodney Parade on Friday night.
The defeat knocked the 55-3 Dublin drubbing at the hands of Leinster in 2005 off top spot in the list of all-time lows.
It was a pathetic, gutless display that leaves the Dragons, who have shipped the most tries of the 28 teams in Europe's three frontline leagues, slumped one from bottom of the table.
But rather than point the finger at his players Edwards issued a mea culpa.
“The nature of the job is that I will cop the flak,” said the head coach. “I prepare the team and I take total responsibility. The buck stops with me.
“It was embarrassing and we've got to make a massive apology but we've just got to fight and keep going.
“We had a good month (they had won their previous three) and had put some good building blocks in place but it all fell apart on Friday. Every aspect of our play went wrong.
“We were poor in every area, we didn't challenge Glasgow from an attacking, defensive or set piece point of view.
“That was embarrassing and there's no other way of talking about a defeat like that.
“We knew we would have a tough game against Glasgow, they are a top team, but I genuinely believed we would be competitive, instead we've let everyone down very badly.
“I feel for (defence coach) Rob Appleyard, he has prepared the team well and I know that we are a good defensive side, we've proved that over the last month.
“The players didn't do their jobs but I can't be blaming them – it's ultimately my responsibility.
“I've got to question whether they are right going on that pitch so I don't want to make any excuses for myself.
“It's a very damaging result and very personal. You want to make sure you put things right.”
However, the manner and severity of the defeat has left many Dragons fans demanding that the current management team don't get the opportunity to put things right.
And it could get even worse for the region unless they improve dramatically.
Next Sunday they travel to Parma to take on Zebre, who have lost all 21 of their games in the Pro12 and Heineken Cup this season.
Defeat to the Italian whipping boys, who have targeted this game for some time, would be another low in an already shocking season.