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Published: 11:34 | 29/5/16

Lam hails industrious Westerners

Connacht boss says achievement is representative

Pat Lam believes that his Connacht side's Pro12 triumph is representative of the nature of the west of Ireland's people.

Connacht completed a fabulous campaign by beating Leinster 20-10 in the competition’s final in Edinburgh on Saturday evening.

Lam was overjoyed following the triumph, telling TG4: “It’s an absolutely proud day for the people of Connacht.

"For the west of Ireland, it’s wonderful. It’s what we dreamed of.

“The people who came here and the welcome we’ve had all season have been tremendous.

“The game sort of highlights what west-of-Ireland people are like. They work hard, and they work hard for each other. I’m very privileged and blessed to be part of it.”

Lam was delighted to conquer Leinster's big-name players and vast experience in Saturday's showdown, and the New Zealander is already eyeing further achievements with his troops.

“It’s all about training these guys to go to the next level,” the former Newcastle player enthused.

“I’ve always said that I wanted an international standard, so if we get to a moment like this, it’s not going to overawe them. They can all just get out there and do their thing.

“The boys have put in a lot of hours together, learning the game, learning how we can play. The boys put the extra time into doing skills, and they’ve got the reward.

“The biggest thing is belief, and belief comes from working hard. I’ve never worked with a team in my whole playing or coaching career that worked so hard.

“We might not have the most talent or experience but if you’ve got the attitude and you’ve got the heart ... and these guys have got it in abundance.”

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