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Johnny Matthews on stiff competition for places benefitting Glasgow Warriors

JOHNNY Matthews believes the stiff competition for the No 2 jersey at Glasgow is beneficial to himself and to the whole squad – even though it may restrict his playing opportunities. 

The 28-year-old hooker, who has just signed a new two-year contract with the Warriors, is up against Fraser Brown, George Turner and Grant Stewart in that fight for a starting berth. But, having made significant progress since originally joining the team on a short-term deal back in 2019, he insisted that he would not have it any other way, and was therefore more than happy to agree his new deal.

“I think we push each other on quite a bit,” Matthews said. “If you look at the performances from the hookers as a whole this season, we’ve been consistently pretty good across the board, so I think the healthy competition has been beneficial for the team. I think we’re all pretty supportive of each other, and when one of us gets the opportunity and takes it, the others are pretty happy for them.”

Scottish-qualified thanks to his Glaswegian mother, the Liverpudlian joked that getting to see Everton was usually the only thing he missed about home – but because of their poor form this season he did not even miss that. “Not at the minute – not the way they’re playing this season,” he said. “Stay clear of them. 

“No, I just miss lots of family and friends that I grew up with. But I’ve got pretty close family and friends and they come up regularly, so I wouldn’t say there’s much that I miss now.

“Glasgow and Liverpool – there are some similarities. I spent quite a lot of summers up here seeing my mother’s side of the family. It’s fine. I do miss home every now and again, but it’s not far away.”

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