Friday 18 August 2017

Laidlaw eager to make mark after late call

Scotland's Greig Laidlaw. Photo: Brendan Moran/Sportsfile
Scotland's Greig Laidlaw. Photo: Brendan Moran/Sportsfile

Independent.ie Sportdesk

Greig Laidlaw has admitted he must find a way to negotiate the high emotion surrounding his whirlwind call-up to the Lions.

Scotland scrum-half Laidlaw insisted he will now fight for a Test spot with the Lions after being drafted in to replace Ben Youngs.

Leicester half-back Youngs withdrew on Saturday on compassionate grounds, after his sister-in-law was diagnosed with terminal cancer.

In sending his heartfelt support to Youngs and family, Laidlaw knows he will eventually have to set aside his conflicting emotions and throw everything at chasing a Lions starting shirt on next month's New Zealand tour.

"Listen, first and foremost I think everyone's thoughts are with Tom, with Ben and the whole of the Youngs family, certainly from within the camp here today as well," said Laidlaw, who fought back to full fitness from an ankle injury which ruined his Six Nations campaign.

"But it's a great opportunity to come in for myself to get my feet on the ground, get involved and put my print on the squad. I never got the call until late Saturday night, so it's quick turnaround.

"I'm moving clubs (from Gloucester to Clermont) so the house is getting packed up as we speak.

"A week's a long time in sport, straight off the back of a defeat with Gloucester we weren't feeling too good about ourselves, then all of a sudden I'm pretty excited about this" he added.

"Everyone will be targeting a start for sure, and I'll be no different."

Irish Independent

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