Bath Rugby Skills and Defence Coach Brad Davis paid tribute to the strengths in the Sale Sharks team as he tries to find ways to rein in the skills of some of sharpest shooters in European rugby.
Davis has been locked away with his Bath troops in preparation for the biggest game of the season, a do or die knockout clash at the Recreation Ground on Saturday.
Bath are as close as they have come to raising European silverware since lifting the Heineken Cup in 1998, but to reach the European Challenge Cup final ten years on from that famous triumph over Brive, Davies' side must see off a side gunning for thier third Challenge Cup title.
Sale were winners in 2002 and 2005 and Davies knows exaclty how hard it will be to stop them from reaching next month's final.
"I think it will be a very close game," he said. "If you go through the playing roster, you will see that both teams are very competitive throughout. Sale have quality players from 1 - 15, as do we, and I think it is going to be a clash between two of the best sides left in this competition."
Keeping their eye on Sale's key players, the Bath coaching team have no doubts of the threats that a number of the Sharks will bring to the Rec tomorrow.
"We have identified particular players as an attacking threat. Hodgson has been outstanding all season for Sale, he really is their Talisman and the one who keeps them ticking over. McAlister is probably much more of an individual threat and Foden has been outstanding from the back. However, at the same time, we have looked at the whole Sale team and they can pose dangers all over the park.
"We have to be aware and defend as a unit this weekend and stick to our principles. If we do that, I believe we will come out on the right side of the scoreboard."
As part of the build-up to next month's Cardiff 2014 Heineken Cup and Amlin Challenge Cup finals weekend, ERC has joined forces with the WRU, Cardiff Blues and adidas to develop an annual grassroots community rugby programme targeting young players.
The Ulster Rugby full back, Jared Payne (No 15), has been suspended for two (2) weeks following an independent Disciplinary Hearing in Dublin arising from the Heineken Cup quarter-final match against Saracens at Ravenhill Stadium on Saturday, 5 April.