Lenac loving life at Scotstoun
It’s been almost a full year since Jordan Lenac made his Glasgow Warriors debut, but you wouldn’t necessarily know it purely from watching the scrum-half at work.
Training with a smile on his face in the Scotstoun sunshine as the team go through final preparations for tomorrow’s trip to Parc y Scarlets, casual onlookers would be forgiven for thinking that the 24-year-old was a fully-fledged member of the playing group with a handful of appearances under his belt.
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Instead, the Australian is preparing for just his second outing in Glasgow colours – albeit in a far more relaxed fashion than ahead of his debut against Benetton last year.
“I’d been in here for about a month or two beforehand, just for a bit of cover in and around the international window,” recalls the easy-going Lenac.
“I’d been prepping with the boys for the week or so beforehand, because we knew Sean Kennedy and his wife were just about to have their kid. I was on standby the night before, and then I was driving to Scotstoun on game day and got a call from Danny saying ‘you’re in’. It was a bit frantic to say the least!
“The boys in the squad made it all seem seamless, though – I didn’t feel out of beat at all. It turned out to be a pretty smooth afternoon, and I’m really looking forward to getting another shot tomorrow night.”
It’s been a long road to Scotstoun for Lenac, yet in a way it’s a return to his rugby roots. His great-grandfather Tom Helm was a member of the first Great Britain rugby league tour to Australia in 1910, having previously represented South of Scotland and Hawick in rugby union.
It was the scrum-half’s rugby pedigree that initially brought him to the attention of the Glasgow coaching team, linking up with the squad in the middle of the 2020/21 campaign.
“I grew up on the Gold Coast in Australia, and I played for Australia Schools as well as the University of Queensland and GPS,” explains Lenac.
“I made the move over here in 2020 originally to join up with Ayr and Ayrshire Bulls, but before I even got here I got a call asking me to come in for a bit of coverage with the boys here at Scotstoun.
“I then went back to the Bulls for the FOSROC Super6 season, had a bit of success there, and now I’m back covering here again.”
The term ‘a bit of success’ is something of an understatement. A 26-16 victory over the Southern Knights ensured that Ayrshire Bulls would cap an impressive campaign by lifting the trophy, with Lenac central to the Millbrae outfit throughout the season.
“I think the biggest thing that Super6 has done for me – and I’m guessing for a lot of the other boys coming from outside of Scotland, too – is that it’s helped me get used to the conditions,” grinned the Brisbane native.
“We’re pretty lucky here at Scotstoun to have the 4G pitch, which guarantees a fast, dry track every week, but that’s definitely not the case at some of the grounds in the Super6!
“It’s been a really great introduction to the style of play, the weather, everything about Scottish rugby – it’s been excellent for me, and to win the competition last year was just the icing on the cake.”
Whilst he’ll be eying up more success in the black and pink of the Bulls in the upcoming FOSROC Super6 Sprint Series, for now Lenac is happy to continue his rugby development at Scotstoun.
With an impressive stable of internationals in the half-backs, it’s an environment in which the number nine is in his element.
“There’s such a good group of guys around the club,” said Lenac.
“There are top-quality players across the field that I can look up to and learn from, and I’m always looking for guidance and advice.
“From my own professional development standpoint, to be in a group of nines with the likes of Pricey [Ali Price], Gog [George Horne], Sheba [Sean Kennedy] and even Jamie [Dobie] – who’s such a cool head for someone so young – is a real blessing.
“I’m just loving being a part of it.”