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July 11, 2017

Young Warriors want to make their mark

Posted by Editor on July 11, 2017 12:13 PM | No comments | Print | E-mail author

Matt Fagerson and Robbie Nairn helped Scotland to fifth in the World Rugby U20 Championship
The new season is fast approaching and the Warriors second block of pre-season training got underway at Scotstoun yesterday.

Among the players involved, were the Scottish Rugby Academy contingent who represented Scotland at the World Rugby U20 Championship in Georgia last month.

Scotland finished fifth, which was their highest ever ranking and Matt Fagerson and Robbie Nairn were two of the players heavily involved.

Speaking to Warriors TV the pair reflected on Georgia and what lies ahead for a promising group of young players.

Robbie said: "I think we surprised ourselves. We knew we had to take it game-by-game and luckily we had a lot of depth in the squad.

"The guys we brought in played really well, especially the young boys who can play next year and that is really promising for the team going forward."

Matt added: "There is really good crop of young boys (involved with Scotland U20) and quite a few of them are going to get exposure in the professional environment this season, so there is a lot of experience coming through."

Robbie, who has spent the last two years at English Premiership side Harlequins, scored three tries in four appearances for Scotland U20 in Georgia and the 20-year-old winger says he feels the time was right to return to Scotland.

He explained: "When I left to go down south it was to try something new, try something different and I thought it would be a good experience, but at the back of my mind I did always want to come back up to Scotland.

"This is where I want to be playing my rugby and I'm really excited to be here and I'm enjoying it.

"I spoke to a few of the guys about coming up and they told me to just get fit in the off-season and come back in ready to go.

"I know quite a lot of the guys and I played with a few of them with Scotland U20, like Adam Hastings, so I feel very welcome."

Robbie says he's looking forward to learning from the other wingers at the club and working closely with assistant coach, Jason O'Halloran, to continue his development.

He added: "It'll be good to work with Tommy Seymour and learn from him and the other back-three guys like Rory Hughes who will be coming back in a couple of weeks.

"I've just spoken to Jason O'Halloran for the first time. I've heard really good things about him and I'm looking forward to working with him this season.

"I don't want to get too far ahead of myself, but I'm looking to try and break into the first team as much as I can.

"It would be great to get some PRO12 caps under my belt, but I just need to take it week-by-week and see where I get to."

Matt, who turns 19 next week, knows he has a big campaign ahead of him after making nine appearances under Gregor Townsend last season.

The backrower says he's excited about the prospect of working with Dave Rennie and Jonathan Humphreys, ahead of the season getting underway in September.

"Dave Rennie has done really well in Super Rugby and with Jonathan Humphreys coming in too it is really exciting," he said.

"I'm developing all the time, especially in an environment like this. I've still got a lot to work on, but the guys around you help you out with everything, there is a good culture here and that is just the way we do it."