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Preview: London Welsh v Worcester Warriors Preview: London Welsh v Worcester Warriors

Preview: London Welsh v Worcester Warriors

Wing Josh Drauniniu believes the table doesn’t reflect the whole picture as Worcester Warriors travel to the Kassam Stadium to face his old club London Welsh on the final day of the Aviva Premiership regular season.

 

The 27-year-old left London Welsh to join then newly promoted Aviva Premiership outfit Worcester at the start of the 2011 season with the Exiles making their own way out of the Championship during that campaign.

London Welsh have lost their last 11 in the Aviva Premiership since their 15-9 victory at home against London Irish on December 1 and sit bottom of the table with 18 points and one game left of the regular season.

Meanwhile Worcester’s only triumph in their last ten Aviva Premiership fixtures was 29-23 at home to London Wasps on March 1 with the Warriors winless away from Sixways in the league all season.

Indeed they have won just once on the road in the Aviva Premiership since April 2009 – that 6-0 against London Wasps on New Year’s Day 2012 – with Drauniniu not taking his former employers for granted.

“Since the start of the season we haven’t had an away win and our main focus is to get our first away win against London Welsh,” said Drauniniu.

“I know going there that they are going to want to play well in front of their crowd, it is going to be hard but we will be prepared for it.

“I didn’t play London Welsh at home because I was injured but they have got some international and ex-international players.

“From experience, they are a great club and we are not going to be taking anything lightly going there. We have done some analysis and you are like ‘wow they are pretty good’ so it is going to be hard for us.

“We don’t see how they are at the bottom of the table with some of the rugby they have played. They have a great full-back in Tom Arscott who played for Worcester last season and they have good wings.”

In Drauniniu’s absence Worcester came out on top 13-6 when they last met London Welsh in the Aviva Premiership in December however there have been managerial changes for the Warriors since.

Head coach Richard Hill has departed and Dean Ryan will come in as director of rugby at the end of the season and wing Nick Scott admits London Welsh will be wary of the consequences of that themselves.

“We know that Worcester have struggled away from home but there have been changes with Dean Ryan coming in so we know they will be coming with a lot of determination,” said Scott, who featured as the Exiles lost their last fixture 47-28 to London Irish.

“There are a lot of guys who were maybe second or third choice who will know that this is their chance to stake a claim. But it’s a great opportunity for us to finish on a high.

“It’s been a difficult second half to the campaign, and last time out we know our defence wasn’t good enough. If we had been offered 28 points before the game we would have probably taken it.

“But defensively our work rate and commitment wasn’t what we’ve come to expect this season. We want to put that right this week and show again that we’ve deserved our place here.”

Kassam Stadium (2.30pm)
Referee:
Mathew Carley (1st Premiership game)
Assistant Referees: Paul Dix & Stuart Terheege.

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