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April 28, 2024

Warriors prepare for South African challenge

Posted by Editor on April 28, 2024 06:07 PM | No comments | Print | E-mail author

Euan Ferrie is one of the young Warriors Franco Smith says are the future
Glasgow's win over Zebre saw them go top of the URC with three games of the regular season remaining.

Warriors sit four points clear of Leinster who slipped to their second consecutive defeat in South Africa at the weekend

It's Glasgow's turn to go to South Africa next and they will fly out a week on Tuesday to face the Bulls and the Lions in what looks like being their two toughest league fixtures of the season.

Franco Smith says his team will train and rest this in preparation for the long haul flight.

"We will be training on Monday, Tuesday and Thursday then we'll give them a long weekend," said the Warriors head coach in The Scotsman. "We want to give them a little bit of time before we go away, but we need to mentally get the job done and make sure we train properly. That's the benefit of not being involved in Europe at the moment. We make the most of the opportunity that it presents.

"It's a different challenge. We've been prepping a long time to go down to South Africa to be ready for that challenge. The important thing now is to get properly recovered and very well organised and hopefully they guys will understand what type of pressure we are going to face."

The heat, altitude and physicality of playing in South Africa has been a significant challenge for the northern European teams and Glasgow lost to the Sharks and Lions away last season in the early days of Franco Smith's tenure.

The Glasgow squad has more depth this season and Smith was able to make nine changes to his team for the Zebre game and still got the job done.

With four hookers ruled out Smith turned to Gregor Hiddleston, who had made only two starts, and the Stirling County man weighed in with two tries while Max Williamson and Euan Ferrie were another two young players to show up well.

"These young boys are the future of Scotland, we need to grow them and get them better," said Smith. "It's games like these that take them from being boys to men. It's very important for them to perform well, and there was some good stuff in that regard."