September 16, 2022
Benetton 33 - 11 Glasgow Warriors
United Rugby Championship match played at Stadio Comunale di Monigo on Friday September 16th 2022 | No comments
Zander Fagerson went over for Glasgow's only try Glasgow's URC campaign got off to a disappointing start as they lost out 33-11 to Benetton in Treviso.
Franco Smith was taking charge of his first competitive Warriors match - coincidently against his former club - but the Italians proved to be far too strong for the Scots.
After an error-strewn start, which saw Rhyno Smith and George Horne trade penalties, Edoardo Padovani and Gianmarco Lucchesi touched down to give the hosts a 13-6 lead at the break.
Marco Bortolami's men would then take that momentum into the second period and Ignacio Mendy crossed the whitewash to add to Glasgow's woes.
Further three-pointers from Smith increased that advantage even further and effectively ended the match as a contest, despite Zander Fagerson's consolation score.
Benetton then deservedly had the final word when Mendy completed his brace and the team's bonus-point with an opportunistic try.
Post match, Smith told glasgowwarriors.org: "First of all, the result is disappointing.
"We didn't have the chance to get rid of all of the pre-season tiredness from our legs in either of our planned friendlies, so coming into the game with just the Ayrshire Bulls hit-out behind us was not ideal.
"I'm trying not to use that as an excuse because we weren't good enough tonight, but there is a reason that you play these warm-up games. Especially in the first-half, we were reverting to old habits. The second half allowed us to show more of what we can do, but we left ourselves too much to do.
"Execution under pressure is one thing we definitely need to work on going forward. I also learnt a lot about the emotional intelligence of all of the players out there - you could see how each individual handled pressure, how they converted it into positive energy and so on.
"We'll be able to improve a lot now that we have these actions on video and available to review ahead of next week, because now we know what triggers are required to stimulate a better performance from them under the intensity of a match against live opposition, rather than simulations in training."
Cardiff come to Scotstoun next week for what will be Glasgow's first fixture at Scotstoun in almost six months, and Smith is confident that his squad will bounce back.
"This is the beginning of the season - we're at the beginning of our journey together," he said.
"There's a reason that Olympic athletes have competitions throughout the season to improve and get to their peak condition in time for the Olympic finals.
"Part of our preparations has involved being sustainable and giving us a platform to grow. These guys have made a step up in pre-season, but tonight was another step up in terms of the intensity of contact.
"There's a lot of work to be done and progress to be made, but we know the energy levels will continue to rise. Everyone that's had their pre-season fixtures has come in to the season in the condition that they want to be in - we're just unfortunate because of the circumstances in our pre-season."