Brian Smith expecting London Irish commitment

Brian Smith
Brian Smith

London Irish director of rugby Brian Smith expects his players to match the passion they showed against Leicester when they travel to Exeter on Saturday.

The Exiles fought to the end in the late defeat against the Tigers but Smith was adamant that the performance set a benchmark.

"Despite coming up just short it was an outstanding effort by the team," Smith told BBC Radio Berkshire.

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Tigers effort set benchmark - Smith

"Now we load up again - we don't intend to drop off when we go away."

Smith was also delighted with the manner in which the London Irish pack took on their much-vaunted Leicester counterparts up front last weekend.

"I think our pack really stood up, they certainly weren't out-classed," he said.

"We know it will be another big battle up front at Exeter because they have a very 'lumpy' side.

"We went six-two [forwards-backs] on the bench last weekend, that paid dividends for us and we'll probably go the same way again this weekend.

"They've done a very good job down there to build their programme, they've got outstanding facilities and obviously they're in a region which is passionate about rugby and they've got a lot of support.

"So it's going to be a good challenge, but the type of game we want to play will hopefully really put them to the test, their defensive systems and when they have the ball as well.

"The boys have licked their wounds and they're ready to go and take on the Chiefs."

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