Glenn Bryce: Full-back says 'new' Edinburgh will play high-tempo rugby at Myreside

Glenn Bryce scores for Edinburgh against Connacht
Glenn Bryce scored two tries in 21 appearances for Edinburgh last season

Full-back Glenn Bryce says Edinburgh "feels like a new club" after an overhaul of the coaching staff.

New head coach Richard Cockerill has added Calum MacRae and Nick Lumley, formerly piloting Scotland Sevens, to his hierarchy at the club.

Edinburgh, who are to remain at Myreside, have finished no higher than eighth in the Pro12 since 2010.

"Richard is bringing a big culture and you can see that already," Bryce told BBC Scotland.

"We've got a team room sorted out, we get breakfast, so we're in early at half-seven. It's changed things.

Richard Cockerill
New Edinburgh boss Richard Cockerill has spoken of his desire to develop young Scottish talent at the club

"This year we want to play a more expansive game - within structure - which will be fast-tempo. The training we're doing just now is all high-intensity; we're not working for long periods of time, it's short bursts.

"We're doing stuff under fatigue - so we're doing long-distance running and then back into skills, putting our skills and decision-making under pressure. We talk about completion under pressure - we're not changing things massively, it's just doing simple things well and building from that."

'It's a big step up'

Strength and conditioning coach Lumley, who has previously worked with English Premiership sides Gloucester and Bath, is held in high regard by the national sevens players.

Scotland Sevens lift the London World Series trophy
Bryce, far left, helped Scotland Sevens retain their London World Series title at Twickenham this May

On secondment from club duties, Bryce helped Scotland Sevens retain their London World Series title in May, and says Lumley is already making his mark.

"Nick knows everyone's got different body compositions, and there's not a one-fits-all programme," Bryce said. "It's individual, and it's a big step up. He's mixed it up as well. Everything's done for a reason, and it's freshened up the boys.

Edinburgh & Glasgow in Pro12 - last six years
SeasonEdinburghGlasgow
2016-179th6th
2015-169th3rd
2014-158th1st (champions)
2013-148th2nd (finalists)
2012-1310th3rd
2011-1211th4th

"Monday, Wednesday, Friday are long days and Tuesday, Thursday are half-days. There are no easy days but he's getting that balance right.

"I think that was missing last season, maybe we were a little bit laid back. Everyone's on their toes now. There's a new coach in, everyone wants that starting jersey and it's a fresh start for everyone."

'We want to fill out Myreside'

Bryce, 26, and elder brother Kevin, 28, swapped Glasgow Warriors for Edinburgh last summer, with the younger sibling scoring two tries in 21 appearances.

Glenn Bryce scores for Glasgow Warriors
Bryce spent three seasons with Glasgow Warriors, and was a member of the squad that won the 2015 Pro12 title

The full-back, who can also play at outside centre or stand-off, says the squad is eager to forge its own identity at 5,500-capacity Myreside, rather than the cavernous 61,744-seater Murrayfield.

"You're coming into Murrayfield and there's not really an identity there because it's the national stadium," he told BBC Scotland. "When you're coming into Scotstoun, you've got all the Warriors flags, and it's an actual stadium for Glasgow.

"The boys love playing [at Myreside], you can hear the crowd, and we want to make it a fortress. We want to get it filled out - if Glasgow can do it at Scotstoun, I don't see why we can't at Myreside.

Edinburgh head coach Richard Cockerill, speaking to BBC Scotland in February
"Edinburgh's had less attention than Glasgow, and it's probably lost its way a little bit. They want a little bit more direction and I think I can give that. I'm a pretty strong character and leader. I've got a very strong work ethic, the players will have to work very hard, want to improve and want to win.
"I'm a person that wants to win. However, the reality is that's going to take some time. There's no way of sugar-coating it - we have to improve."

"The supporters will be able to feel part of the club while we're there. We just need the wins. That'll bring the team and the crowd closer together. This year, it's all about putting it into action."

'He makes the ball look like a size three'

Bryce is also excited to play alongside hulking New Zealand-born centre Robbie Fruean, a new signing from Bath, and in time, with Scotland midfielder Mark Bennett, who is recovering from long-term knee damage.

"He makes the Rhino ball look like a size three when he's training," said Bryce. "He's really going to be a strong player for us this season and he's got that experience as well.

Robbie Fruean
Robbie Fruean has joined Edinburgh on a two-year deal ahead of the coming season

"It's not so much telling the boys what to do - he's open-minded and he's giving good inputs. Mark Bennett's been out injured, but he's been grinding away with the rehab, he's been watching the backs now and again, he's coming to all the analysis stuff and putting in his input as well."

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