Declan Kidney was left to reflect on what might have been following Friday’s last-gasp defeat to Gloucester.

Irish suffered late heartache, going down 30-28 at Kingsholm, with Billy Twelvetrees kicking the winning points with the last play of the game.

Speaking in the aftermath of the loss, Kidney said: “I’m so disappointed for the boys - but you have to earn your wins and unfortunately we just didn’t do quite enough on the night.

“Both teams had a right good go at it and Gloucester just came away with the spoils.

“In sport, when you lose in the last play of the game, it’s always going to be really disappointing. 

“There’s a numbness, an anger, the boys are upset - but if you weren’t feeling those emotions, you shouldn’t be in the dressing room.”

He added: “It’s fine margins at this level.

“We can do better, we know that. But there’s also a lot that’s in our control and that gives me confidence we can continue to improve.

“It was an improved performance, we were a better version of ourselves, and we’ll have to be even better again against Wasps next weekend.”

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