Heineken Cup: Gloucester have to win the mind game against Perpignan
PLAY the Perpignan game in your mind all morning, or be wiped out at night, Sione Kalamafoni has challenged Gloucester.
The Cherry and Whites host French Top 14 powers Perpignan at Kingsholm tomorrow (6pm), desperate to hit back from last week's demoralising Exeter defeat.
Tongan brute Kalamafoni cannot wait for his Heineken Cup debut and believes Gloucester can combat last week's Exeter shortcomings through more meticulous mental preparation.
"The right mindset is vital, otherwise it will be the same game again," conceded the 25-year-old juggernaut.
"If we have the mentality correct right from the off, then everything falls into place off the back of that.
"It's always easier when we get our approach correct.
"You've got to get the mindset right from when you wake up in the morning.
"You need that intensity right from the beginning of the day, so you can get on top of it right at the start of the game, rather than waiting.
"You don't have to wait for your moment, it's a work-rate thing. You've got to keep on going, even when you're blowing.
"Consistency in work-rate is what we need.
"It's visualising things you could do in the game, and that will put you in the right frame of mind, allowing you to perform at your top level.
"It's important to go through things you want to do in the game in certain situations in your mind, on the morning of the match and in the build-up.
"I can't wait for my first game in the Heineken Cup, it's a massive competition and one everyone wants to play in.
"It's a great chance to show what you're all about, and it's a great opportunity for us as a club to prove we can hit back after Exeter.
"Accuracy and intensity has been good in training this week, so I think we can take that into tomorrow and bring back winning ways to Kingsholm.
"We've got to prove something to the supporters, but maybe to ourselves as well.
"Hopefully we can come up with the win to turn things around."
Old Gloucester favourites Luke Narraway and Alasdair Strokosch will make first returns to Kingsholm in their second season away from the Cherry and Whites.
The twin back-row threats will be intent on inflicting more misery on Gloucester after their 29-12 Premiership defeat to Exeter.
Kalamafoni is unfazed by coming up against the two former long-term Kingsholm servants, though.
The wrecking-ball loose- forward is not bothered whoever is in his way – he will still try to steamroller them.
He continued: "For me personally, the way I look at games is that it's just the same whoever you're up against.
"You've got to smash whoever's coming round that corner, and with the ball, you either go hard or you go backwards. So you can't look at any of the games differently, you've got to treat them all the same and just throw absolutely everything at it."