James Brown says a win against ERC Challenge Cup rivals Clermont, tomorrow, will have a big impact on Warriors’ vital Guinness Premiership clash with Wasps at Sixways, in 13 days time.
The 28-year-old fly-half also believes that the spirit and confidence in the home dressing room can be the foundation of success in both confrontations.
Brown has enjoyed sparkling form since being recalled to the Warriors starting line-up by director of rugby John Brain, in harness with Shane Drahm at full-back.
The pairing has added an attacking dimension to Worcester’s play that, allied to a growing defensive discipline, has started to turn the team’s fortunes round.
“To be honest, over the Christmas period we’ve been showing glimpses of what we can do as an attacking force,” he says. “Having Phil Larder on board has tightened us up. We’ve grown as a team. We’ve become tight as a unit.
“I’m glad to be starting and Shane seems to be settling in well at full-back as well. It’s very difficult when either of us is playing at 10. The opposition put a lot of pressure on that position. With both of us on the pitch, there are different ways in which the play can be switched. We have a bit more width as well.”
He expects tomorrow’s match to be a world away from the first Pool 5 game in Clermont, at the end of October. Warriors rested a number of senior players – as did the French club – and two tries in the final three minutes from Gavin Quinnell produced a losing bonus point in a 29-23 defeat.
“It’s going to be very different this time,” he says, “but we need to concentrate on ourselves. We’ve had a tough Christmas period. What we wanted to do was get our home form back on track. If we can do that against Clermont, we can take it into the game against Wasps at Sixways.
“Training is going very well. The boys are confident and we’re happy with the way we’re trying to play. If the performances weren’t very good, we’d be disappointed. As long as we keep performing, the results will go our way and the boys will stay in high spirits.”