McLean eager to get stuck in
Having run in six tries in a 37-0 shut-out of Benetton last time out, a four-week break between fixtures was arguably the last thing that Glasgow Warriors players and supporters wanted.
With spirits high and riding a wave of momentum, Franco Smith and his squad would have fancied their chances against anyone in the competition.
Save £15 this Black Friday weekend with 50% off Warrior Nation Memberships! 🤩
— Glasgow Warriors (@GlasgowWarriors) November 25, 2022
Roll the clock forward to the present day, and that feelgood factor is still present around the squad, though, as the BKT United Rugby Championship returns with a bang this weekend.
“There’s such a good buzz about the squad right now,” winger Rufus McLean told glasgowwarriors.org before boarding the plane to Dublin for this weekend’s clash with Leinster.
“It’s been great to come back in [from Scotland camp] this week and slot back in with the boys; the atmosphere and the culture around training right now is just great to be a part of.
“It’s been really sharp and focused this week, and everyone is raring to get stuck into this next massive block of fixtures.”
McLean’s eyes light up as he mentions the upcoming block of matches, and with good reason. With 10 games in 10 successive weekends, including the pool stages of the EPCR Challenge Cup and the festive 1872 Cup double-header with Edinburgh, it’s a two month-spell on which there’s quite a bit resting.
Yet the winger’s excitement is also mixed with a sense of calm, with the message clear – there’s still more to come from this group of Warriors.
“I honestly can’t wait to get stuck in,” he said.
“It’s been four weeks since I last played, so that’s just made me even more eager to get back out there. 10 games in 10 weeks is a mouth-watering prospect and I know the boys here can’t wait to tear into it.
“We were really pleased with how the Benetton match went, but we came away knowing there were definitely a few areas we could sharpen up ahead of this week. Our attack, in particular, has been something we’ve been looking a lot at this week, just making sure we’re really clinical and playing our game.”
A trip to take on league leaders Leinster presents a stern test to open the block, but it’s a test that McLean and company are relishing.
“Our main work-on has been to take our home form, which has been excellent, into our away performances,” said the winger.
“We know we haven’t been good enough on the road this year, so we’ve been working to try and bring the same mindset we have at home when we travel.
“This weekend is the perfect place to start trying to put that into action.”