Tuesday 24 January 2017

Seymour welcomes Glasgow's new 'fast track' artificial pitch

Published 09/09/2016 | 02:30

Glasgow’s Tommy Seymour is hoping to build on last week’s win over Connacht when Leinster come to town tomorrow. Photo: NurPhoto via Getty Images
Glasgow’s Tommy Seymour is hoping to build on last week’s win over Connacht when Leinster come to town tomorrow. Photo: NurPhoto via Getty Images

Reading too much into opening-day results is often a fruitless exercise but such was Glasgow Warriors' devastating performance in Galway last week, it was difficult not to have been hugely impressed.

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Gregor Townsend's side quite clearly felt as if they had something to prove after two consecutive defeats to Connacht at the tail end of last season derailed their title hopes, but the ruthless manner in which they tore the Westerners apart will have sent out a warning to the rest of the league.

Few would argue, that on paper at least, Leinster and Glasgow possess the two strongest squads in this season's Pro12 so for them to be meeting so early in the competition makes tomorrow's encounter all the more fascinating.


Tommy Seymour was outstanding for Glasgow last week and his two tries helped his side to go some way towards banishing last season's nightmare.

Motivation was not in short supply heading to the Sportsground as the Scotland winger acknowledged.

"If I said it didn't then everyone would be able to call you on your lies! It was obviously a huge motivation for us," he said.

"You look at those two games and Connacht deserved them. They won the games, they played better, they were more efficient with it so it's not to say that they didn't deserve it but we probably a bit sad about how we did ourselves justice.

"Losing those two games was hard and it was obviously a disappointing way to finish the season.

"They were coming out as champions. Packed sell-out crowd. The whole city's buzzing for them so we knew we were going to have to put in one hell of a performance to do that.

"We used that motivation from last year and obviously the things we practised in pre-season got us over the line."

Leinster travel to a revamped Scotstoun tomorrow and they face a new challenge in that an artificial surface has just been completed in the stadium.

It will be the first competitive game that Glasgow play on the new surface and for some teams it may pose some difficulty but the Leinster players have played and trained in Donnybrook often enough to know exactly what to expect.

"It's fast," Seymour said. "I think it's got a lot of positives in the sense that we're no longer going to have to be worried about weather playing a factor in terms of cancellations or bogged pitches.


"Certainly from my point of view as an outside back, it's something I relish in the sense that it's a quick track.

"There's going to be quick ball on it and your footing is always going to be assured but there obviously are the sore points in terms of the hardness of the pitch. The burn effect on the knees is something we'll adapt to.

"You can never have a perfect scenario with an artificial surface but with what we crave as a team in terms of how we want to play, it suits us down to the ground and it allows us to keep that style of play consistently throughout the year."

Glasgow may feel that the new surface suits their game-plan but Leinster too will know that they can thrive on it.

Irish Independent

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