Whereas over the last few years, London Scottish have risen up the leagues relatively steadily (even though it did take a last minute try by David Howells to gain promotion last season), the sides we will be facing on a weekly basis are very big names in the rugby world.
We know we’re going to have to play some really good rugby on a weekly basis to win games in this league, and we did just that in our opening game against Rotherham.
Our opposition this Saturday at 2pm, Cornish Pirates, who narrowly lost out to Worcester in last years Championship final will be no exception. We expect the Richmond Athletic Ground to be very busy for the game, and we’re hoping for a great game between two sides who like to play with pace. The beauty of the Championship is that all clubs have a very passionate support, so each game has a great atmosphere.
In my few spare moments I’ve been able to catch the Rugby World Cup. It’s coincided quite nicely with the birth of my new baby daughter, Molly, and I’ve been able to watch during the early morning feeding sessions!
It’s been a really interesting start. What you’ve seen are second-tier Nations such as Japan, Georgia and Romania showing the gap has closed with top-tier nations. Argentina’s inclusion in the Tri-Nations and their third place at the last World Cup show they are one of the top nations and represented a tough opening test for England.
I’ve played against the Pumas a number of times on the Sevens circuit and as a nation, they have always been ferocious at the breakdown – as we saw against England. So for England to get the win, even though the performance was not what they aspire to, was critical and gives them a starting point to build on for the rest of the World Cup.
The same can be said for Scotland’s opening fixtures. They have two wins on the board without playing particularly well against two smaller nations in Georgia and Romania, but they’ll now see Argentina and England as huge games that they have a real chance of winning. It will be fascinating to see how this pool in particular ends up.
Simon Amor is Head Coach at London Scottish. Their next fixture is at home on Saturday 17th September against Cornish Pirates.