Rory Lawson is delighetd to be in the Guinness Premiership
RORY LAWSON has insisted the chance to play his rugby in the Guinness Premiership was simply too good to turn down - and believes the English league is 'centre stage in the rugby world.'
Gloucester's new recruit from the Edinburgh Gunners, who begins his two-year Kingsholm contract in the summer, also praised the ambition and commitment of coaches Dean Ryan and Bryan Redpath as major reasons for moving south.
The 24-year-old is currently in Australia preparing for the Commonwealth Games, but told www.gloucesterrugby.co.uk. "Dean Ryan and Bryan Redpath certainly made things easier for me. They were just so positive about everything, are hugely ambitious and very committed to the club. Overall, they made it a very attractive option for me to join a club that is really building.
"My Dad [former Scotland star Alan Lawson] came down and played for London Scottish and never regretted it. He said the competition was excellent and these days the Guinness Premiership is at the centre stage of the rugby world.
"I didn't want to look back at my career and regret I didn't attempt to play at that level. The decision to leave is always difficult but in the end I knew I had to make it to further my career."
Lawson has made five appearances for the Gunners this season but is behind Scotland's first choice number nine Mike Blair in the pecking order.
But with Blair's involvement in the Six Nations, Lawson captained the side in their last two games, against Cardiff and Ulster. The former Heriots FP star who is the grandson of commentator Bill McLaren, has scored two tries for Edinburgh and has helped them to third spot in the Celtic League this season.
"It was frustrating at Edinburgh with Mike Blair up there too," he said. "He has obviously been in outstanding form this season but when I was given my chance, I thought I made the most of the opportunities.
"I thought I had shown my hand in that sort of environment but to get the chance in the Premiership at a club like Gloucester is fantastic and I am really looking forward to the challenges it will throw at me.
"There is no such thing as a comfort zone in the Premiership and I am really excited about stretching and pushing myself to the limit.
"Gloucester is a massive club with an incredible tradition and I hope I can add to that next season."
With such a short turnaround between the two games, and Gloucester looking to reintegrate several players into the line-up after the Autumn international series, Tom Savage told GRTV that the Cherry and Whites will keep changes to a minimum for the European Rugby Challenge Cup game in Zebre on Saturday.
Gloucester travel to Italy this weekend to take on Zebre in Round Four of the European Rugby Challenge Cup. The Cherry and Whites defeated the Italian side 35-10 last Sunday, but Director of Rugby David Humphreys is looking for an improved performance in the return fixture.
Skipper Billy Twelvetrees, speaking to GRTV after the 35-10 over Zebre, was happy with the bonus point win over the Italian side but admitted Gloucester will need to tighten up for the return fixture in Parma.
Gloucester Rugby welcome Sione Kalamafoni, Greig Laidlaw and Tom Palmer back to the starting line up and feature David Halaifonua in a matchday squad for the first time, as they resume Aviva Premiership action against Bath Rugby at Kingsholm on Saturday (kick off 5:30pm).