Glasgow Warriors head coach, Sean Lineen, is looking forward to the first game of the 2010/11 Magners League season – against Leinster at Firhill on Friday night (3 September, kick-off 7.05pm) – after experiencing his most enjoyable pre-season to date.
The Warriors moved into their new training centre at Scotstoun Stadium on 1 June, and three months later Lineen feels that he and his coaching staff have had more time and resource to apply to the squad's rigorous schedule of pre-season training.
"It's the most satisfying pre-season I've had as a head coach," he said. "We're training at Scotstoun now so we've been able to do a lot more coaching.
"The pre-season games have been good for us, we've learnt a lot from Dundee right through until Sale and Wasps. There are some areas to improve on but a lot of good stuff as well."
Although the pre-season games provided good opportunities to try new ideas and rotate his squad, Lineen knows that from Friday, the intensity will be completely different as league points are up for grabs.
He continued: "Our game against Sale at Firhill was a good stepping stone but we know it's going to be a massive physical test against Leinster.
"It's always a good battle with Leinster. They've got a lot of youngsters as well but they've also got plenty experience. The back-row, which I rate very highly, is their weapon."
With injuries to some key personnel in the Glasgow squad, Lineen has been impressed with the application of some of his younger charges, particularly second-row Richie Gray whose task it is to fill the void left by Magners League Dream Team captain Alastair Kellock.
"Richie Gray knows that Al Kellock's out for a while so he's really taking that mantle," said Lineen. "He and Tom Ryder are forming a really good second row combination."
Glasgow attracted their biggest ever pre-season attendance when they welcomed Sale Sharks to Firhill only two weeks ago. Now Lineen wants to ensure the Firhill faithful to return in greater number and voice.
"We had 2,500 people at our pre-season game which has never been done before, so we're obviously capturing peoples' imagination to have that number at a friendly.
"They made a lot of noise and that's really important. I hope they do it again on Friday and we give them reason to do that."
This game is live on BBC ALBA and BBC Radio Scotland.
Glasgow Warriors team to play Leinster in the Magners League at Firhill on Friday 3 September (kick-off 7.05pm).
15 Bernardo Stortoni CAPTAIN
14 DTH van der Merwe
13 Max Evans
12 Graeme Morrison
11 Federico Aramburu
10 Ruaridh Jackson
9 Henry Pyrgos
1 Jon Welsh
2 Fergus Thomson
3 Moray Low
4 Tom Ryder
5 Richie Gray
6 Ryan Wilson
7 Chris Fusaro
8 Richie Vernon
Substitutes: 16 Pat MacArthur, 17 Ed Kalman, 18 Ryan Grant, 19 Aly Muldowney, 20 Rob Harley, 21 Duncan Weir, 22 Hefin O'Hare, 23 Peter Murchie