Glasgow Warriors | Squad rotation brings out best in Warriors

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January 15, 2023

Squad rotation brings out best in Warriors

Posted by Editor on January 15, 2023 10:31 PM | No comments | Print | E-mail author

Stafford McDowall skippered Warriors for the first time in the win over Perpignan
The 40-26 win over Perpignan at Stade Aime Giral extended Glasgow's winning run to seven matches and clinched a place in the knockout phase of the European Challenge Cup.

The result also offered further evidence that Franco Smith's squad rotation policy is paying off. The team showed 12 changes from the previous week's URC win over Stormers, yet there was no apparent drop off in quality or intensity of play. That view is shared by Stafford McDowall, who was captaining the side for the first time.

Speaking in The Scotsman, McDowall said: "I think it's a great thing. It's probably something we didn't have last year, but the way Franco rotates the squad means that everyone is playing well.

"I think it's because everyone is getting regular game-time at the moment that everyone is playing well and the team is going well. I never think it's a bad thing if you've got multiple boys playing in the same position. It's just that Franco is very good at rotating the squad and making sure everyone is happy and getting game time. And when you get your chance to play, you have to perform."

McDowall was among the scorers on Saturday in what was his first outing as captain, although he admits that the task was made easier by the quality of those around him, adding, "I just tried to focus on my job. It was a massively proud moment for me and my family, but I just tried to approach it as a normal game and try and not put too much pressure on myself.

"There's leaders right through the team that massively helped me," he admitted "I didn't have to do anything different, to be honest. The team's good - everyone does their own role and takes care of themselves."

Warriors welcome Bath to Scotstoun on Friday knowing another win would put them in contention for a home tie in the play-off section of the competition. However, McDowall, is focusing only on the short term. "We've definitely got a squad now that is deep enough to challenge on two fronts but we'll just take it week by week and game by game," added McDowall. "We are not going to look any further ahead than next week's game against Bath."