Dowson – Close-knit squad hungry to climb the table

Phil Dowson says the close-knit Warriors squad are hungry to climb the Aviva Premiership table during the 2016/17 season.

Warriors finished tenth last time out – a campaign in which they enjoyed a Club-record run of four consecutive top-flight victories.

And with the players now in their third week of pre-season, Dowson admits he and his teammates are focused on making even more progress before the season gets underway.

He said: “We’re all looking forward to the season ahead and we’ll be looking to improve and kick-on. 

“We were close in a lot of games last season and we know we’re capable of working together to climb the league. 

“A lot of the lads who played last year are still here and we’ve strengthened the squad with five lads coming in to help us so we know we have every opportunity to enjoy a successful season.”

Ben Te’o is one summer signing yet to arrive at Sixways after he was named in the England squad to tour Australia.

And Dowson, who racked-up seven England appearances in 2012, says Te’o will have learnt a lot from his time away this summer. 

He continued: “We’re looking forward to getting Ben and the other new lads involved in what we’re doing so we can continue to build towards the start of the season. 

“It’s a good experience for him at the moment to be around the best players in England and he’ll be learning a lot and building relationships within the squad.

“He will have a chance to show what he can do every week in the Premiership when he gets to Sixways and I'm sure that first cap will be in his hand very soon.”

Away from rugby Dowson has been following England’s progress in football’s Euro 2016. And he thinks England can surprise a few people in the knockout stages.

He added: “I’m confident England can do well as they’ve got a good side who are all talented. 

“It’s been good to see Jamie Vardy having more of a role and I’d like to see him up front with Harry Kane. But Roy knows best!”