Director Of Cricket Steve Rhodes reflected on the impact of dropped chances and the loss of early wickets in their second innings as Worcestershire went down to a 138 run defeat against Derbyshire at Derby.
Worcestershire were set a target of 268 in 57 overs and were bowled out for 129 with 10.2 overs remaining in the LV = County Championship Division Two fixture.
Wes Durston fully exploited a turning and bouncing wicket to finish with 5-19 from 13 overs.
But failure to hold onto catches also proved crucial with Wayne Madsen put down twice before he had got to 15 on his way to a crucial 98.
Rhodes told BBC Hereford-Worcester's Dave Bradley: "It was never going to be easy because they had two good spinners and a wicket was turning and bouncing. It was going to be quite difficult.
"Whilst we gave it a good shot, and there were some good efforts down the order from Shants (Jack Shantry) and Mitchell McClenaghan, losing your top five batters in 25 overs is the biggest blow and that's something they've got to try and correct.
"However, apart from Mitch (Daryl Mitchell), it is a very young and growing sort of batting line-up who do make mistakes.
"They've been good this year and they are allowed to make mistakes as long as they learn from it.
"Ultimately if we had taken a few chances, it might have been a lot less of a target and it might have been a different result."
Rhodes added: "I was very surprised that both sides got the amount of runs they did in that first innings because there were some balls in the wicket that were very wicket-taking deliveries.
"For us to bat 130 overs in the first innings, I thought was a great effort.
"Ultimately we will rue some slip ups in the field and some chances that went down and also not putting a stamp on things in our second innings by getting off to a good start.
"That is something the lads have got to try and work on and make sure in crucial moments in the game that we do things right.
"I thought the catching last match as well wasn't as good as it could be and we have caught really well this year. It does come and go, the catching, but it was disappointing to drop a few.
"I think Madsen would have got a lot less runs and that could have been a big difference because his 98 was crucial in setting up a game."
Worcestershire now lead the Division Two table by seven points from Hampshire ahead of their final two games with Surrey at home and Essex away.
When asked if the pressure of the situation was affecting players, Rhodes said: "I think one of the things we are trying to do is make sure the players stay in the present and just concentrate on getting into a good position in four day cricket and then putting their foot down.
"But sadly for us we've lost toss twice in a row and it was very difficult at home to Gloucestershire to try and get some runs on that first day.
"This toss proved quite crucial. I didn't think it would be as crucial a toss but Derbyshire got things right.
"They got a score on the board and the wicket wore and wore and the footholds were quite big and deep and it certainly kicked for the spinners.
"I would say they got the selection right, the toss right and did well with the ball. Winning the toss in one if not both of these last two games will be crucial as well."