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Townsend impressed by Glasgow Warriors’ preseason progress

Guinness PRO12 Editor

3 Jul 2016

Glasgow Warriors head coach Gregor Townsend believes his side will be ready to make a flying start to this GUINNESS PRO12 campaign, after an impressive start to preseason.

The Scotstoun outfit had an up-and-down start to the 2015/16 term, before they really hit their stride in the second half of the season and won nine games on the bounce on their way to the GUINNESS PRO12 play-offs.

This time around however Townsend has left nothing to chance, with the players beginning training just 10 days after the 16-11 semi-final loss to eventual champions Connacht.

And the former Scotland international has been impressed with his players’ effort to get back to the top of the GUINNESS PRO12 standings this season.

“It’s been excellent, with a lot of hard work from the players,” he told the Glasgow Warriors official website.

“We’ve assessed the data from previous preseasons, and it’s clear the players are working harder. There’s more intensity in the sessions and they are running more kilometres.

“The players are doing more in terms of their learning on the field as well as off it, studying how other teams go about their business as well as how to sleep better.

“So it’s been a rich and full on pre-season so far. Because they only had a short break after the season, their general fitness has been great.

“We measured the players body fat at the beginning and at the end of block one with 90% of the guys showing improvement.

“That’ll sustain them throughout the holiday period they are on at the moment, although they will still have to continue to work hard to keep those gains in place.”

The Warriors will look to be flying in more ways than one when the GUINNESS PRO12 kicks off again this autumn with a new artificial pitch being laid at Scotstoun.

And Townsend is relishing the thought of his side taking the league by storm with fast, free-flowing rugby as a result.

He added: “We can’t wait to have our first training session and game on that pitch. It means we will no longer be fearful of games being called off due to wet weather.

“It also means we will be able to play on a consistent surface that promotes fast rugby.

“All of the work we did in block one of pre-season is all about playing a high tempo game in attack and playing a game in defence that allows us to put lots of pressure on the opponents.

“The new pitch will help us do that.”

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