Newport Gwent Dragons went down to their 11th defeat in 14 matches this season at Benetton Treviso at the weekend - but head coach Darren Edwards believes the worst is finally behind them.
The Welsh region have stayed on in Italy ahead of their Amlin Challenge Cup Pool 3 match against tournament newcomers Rugby Mogliano on Saturday but their hopes of building on their victory over Connacht and gaining some momentum were blown away by Treviso.
"I'm proud of the way the players kept battling against a powerful pack full of internationals and I honestly believe we have turned a corner with our recent performances," said Edwards.
International wing Will Harries was sent off for a second yellow card mid-way through the second-half and with him went the
Dragons' faint hopes of adding to their score, Tom Prydie scoring all the points, including a well-taken second half try.
"We don't have an argument with the red card because the two offences were both worth yellow cards.
"When you're on the back foot and go for things like an interception or come in at the side of the ruck, you're going to come off second best if you don't get them right.
"It was a shame because at the time we looked like we could have taken something from this game which I felt we deserved for all our effort."
Finals Edition: Listen to the best guide to the European Rugby Cup Finals weekend in Dublin, which sees Leinster Rugby take on Stade Francais Paris at the RDS on Friday night in the Amlin Challenge Cup Final and then ASM Clermont Auvergne tackle Toulon in an all-French affair at the Aviva Stadium on Saturday.
With the build-up to the Dublin 2013 European club rugby finals intensifying by the day, the four elite clubs of ASM Clermont Auvergne, Toulon, Leinster Rugby and Stade Francais Paris, who are focused on their quest for Heineken Cup and Amlin Challenge Cup silverware respectively, won't be the only clubs with Europe on their mind over the weekend of 17 and 18 May.
With eight leading clubs still in the race for coveted Dublin 2013 Heineken Cup and Amlin Challenge Cup final berths, this weekend's European semi-finals will be watched keenly by Bath Rugby, Connacht Rugby and London Wasps among others as their hopes of qualification for the 2013/14 Heineken Cup hang in the balance.
Stade Français Paris scrum half, Jérôme Fillol (No 9), has been suspended for fourteen (14) weeks following an independent Disciplinary Hearing in Dublin arising from the Amlin Challenge Cup quarter-final match against Bath Rugby.
Read all three hearing decisions here..
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