Franco Smith’s Glasgow Warriors. So good, they don’t even let you get your bum ON the seat before they’ve caused you to get your bum OFF it!

Such was the nature of the victory at Scotstoun two weeks, the only disappointment you could have was that we didn’t put more past a sorry Dragons side. It would have been more of a challenge taking on Toothless from ‘How to Train Your Dragon’ in all honesty.

As the strains on ‘Enter Sandman’ disappeared and the smoke from the players entrance dispersed, Josh McKay was over the line and celebrating with his teammates. 30 seconds on the clock. Glasgow were not hanging around. I was still at the bottom of the stand and had to watch from there as they stunned the Welsh side. Could they keep up the pace though? Surely just a side caught on the hop? Bang! Big Stafford with a cutting line that Frankie Boyle would’ve been proud of. If Glasgow could keep this score rate up, Glasgow would be able to declare.

Sadly though, they were unable to keep that pace up and the rain sweeping across the Scotstoun sky meant that the ball was slippy and contributed to a numerous handling errors. It was a shame for the Warriors players and fans, probably a blessing for the Dragons!

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It was a half that seemed to last an eternity and as the clock ticked down, it seemed the lightning start was going to remain the only scores of the game until Josh McKay stepped up to effectively kill the tie off. 21-0 at the half.

Glasgow quickly racked up the bonus point within 4 minutes of the restart and from then on it was a case of what Glasgow wanted it to be. It’s always nice to see a player get his first try but the delight on the face of Ben Afshar was a joy. Ashfar is a perfect example of what Franco is building at Scotstoun. When the season began, he had Price. Horne, Dobie and Kennedy all ahead of him in the pecking order. Head down, work hard in training and take advantage of game time when it comes to you and look at him now. The player has been rewarded and Franco knows he has a player he trusts when others are unable to play.

Rare pressure from the Dragons led to a disallowed try and then an actual try but it was clear this was merely a speedbump on the way to victory as first Facundo Cordero (making his debut almost a year after he joined!) and then big Stafford crossed the whitewash to make it a comfortable victory for the Weeg.

So what did we learn from this game? Well, in some ways not a lot. Dragons are pretty much exactly where their league position suggests. The table doesn’t lie. The satisfaction from a Warriors point of view is that Dragons and a weakened Warriors squad have often caused issues and struggles for Warriors Head Coaches. Not so for Smith. His team were not passing up the opportunity to put a marker down.

Another point to note is that Stafford McDowall is probably the unluckiest centre in Scottish Rugby. This guy just cannot get into the Scotland line up but it’s not because of a lack of effort or skill. Stafford gives 100% every single time he pulls that Warriors shirt on. He’s a superb player who is an excellent weapon that Smith loves to select from the armoury. 15 carries, 86 metres made, 6 defenders beaten and 8 gain line carries. Oh and you can add 2 tries to those stats. No wonder he was Man of the Match! McDowall just suffers from the fact that he has to contend with Jones, Tuipolotu, Redpath and Hutchinson. But if he can get a run in dark blue, there will be no stopping the big fella, of that I am sure. Still, from a purely selfish point of view, Scotland’s loss is most definitely Glasgow’s gain!

His centre partner, Tom Jordan, also had an exceptional game. If I’ve had one gripe since Franco joined it has been his insistence on playing Jordan at 10. Don’t get me wrong, he’s played well there, but inexperience has shown in some situations and that is no slight on Jordan. It’s Pete Horne syndrome all over again. He’s playing where he’s asked, not necessarily where he wants to play. Jordan on Saturday night formed an excellent partnership with McDowall. He had a 100% tackle success rate. Jordan of course has a similar problem to McDowall in that there are several players in the Warriors squad who can play that position while fly half has been an issue for Glasgow and he has been benefited from the game time. I’d like to see him given a bit more time here and see if the promising partnership with McDowall can develop.

And if reports are anything to go by, his time at 10 will be limited due to the seemingly imminent announcement that Adam Hastings is headed back to Scotstoun. I’m not sure I remember a returning player dividing opinion quite so much. All players who re-sign for the club are always subject to a small number of fans who aren’t keen but this one seems to be a relatively 50/50 split of ‘yays’ and ‘naes’. Glasgow do need a fly half, but I’m not sure Hastings is the answer. And neither are a few others!

Sadly, the first half of the double header was less successful as the Warriors women lost 17-24 to Brython Thunder and have now followed up this result with a demoralising 43-5 defeat to Gwalia Lightning. This leaves them bottom of the inaugural Celtic Championship, and 10 points from fifth bottom. But lets look at the positives of this. This is unprecedented exposure for the women’s game in this country and a chance for many players to showcase their obvious talents. What we need to see now is this as the catalyst for further development and growth of the game in this country. Hopefully some of these players will soon be adding to the ranks of the Scotland squad and inspiring others to push themselves and make the leap. What we also need now is better exposure for these games and maybe a few more double headers if possible to get even more people interested in women’s rugby. That’s a challenge Glasgow need to take up the baton on.

Next up for the men is Benetton on March 2. Never an easy game in my favourited hedged stadium (not enough grounds have nice topiary in them!) but with the Italians flying high this season, this will not be an easy feat for Glasgow. If I was look at slip ups in the run in to the playoffs, this definitely has banana skin written all over it! We’ll have to see what players, if any, Scotland give back and how the current injury list is looking but Glasgow need to take their strongest team possible across to Italy. It’s about being professional, working hard and getting the job done.

With Franco in charge, I’m sure Glasgow will be well drilled and ready for the battle!