Jamie Dobie insists Glasgow Warriors will only be able to count this season as success if it ends with silverware.

The talented young scrum-half is heading back to South Africa with Glasgow Warriors, almost five years on from making his debut in the country.

That was against the Cheetahs and now it’s the Bulls and the Lions they’ll come up against. It’s a difficult place to go for any team in the Northern Hemisphere and that’s something Dobie accepts, but he doesn’t want any excuses going into the double header.

Glasgow currently sit top of the URC table and finishing there would give them home advantage right through the play-offs.

It would be an achievement to finish an 18 game season at the top of the pile but it won’t be enough for Dobie to feel it has been an overall success of a season unless he gets his hands on a trophy at the end of it all.

He said: “I think finishing first across an 18-match season would be great but the important thing is how we go after that. Last year we finished fourth and we had the home quarter-final and we lost to Munster, and that’s obviously not the result that we wanted.

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“So as nice as finishing on top would be and having that potential home run, I think what really matters is how we go in the play-offs.

“I think we’re in a really strong place. I think as a squad we’ve come on and developed right across the board, probably more so than we had done previously. 

“We’re obviously where we want to be in the table so it’s in our control and we know that if we can win the remaining three matches then we’ll finish the season on top and that gives you the potential home run-in if you can play well and win in the play-offs.

“It’s in our own hands now, so a win or two wins in South Africa would be absolutely massive for us.”

Dobie is looking forward to a couple of weeks in the sunshine but there’s no chance of any of the players being in holiday mode.

The extra preparation time they got over the weekend when they weren’t involved in European action was a big help.

It’s not just on the training pitch they’ve been putting in the effort though and they’ve been preparing on their bikes too to deal with the altitude levels.

It’s something the players feel have helped them improve and Dobie is hoping it can play a part in them getting a result or two in South Africa.

He added: “I’m looking forward to a bit of sun and a bit of Vitamin D but apart from that we know what the goal is. The matches are the focus and we’ve had some really good prep.

“With not being in the European competitions last weekend we had an extra few days of prep which allowed us to get ahead of the curve last week so it means this week we can just put the finishing touches to our plan.

“I think we’re in a really good place and all the focus is on this Bulls match, first up.

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“It’s a really cool place to play, a cool stadium and a tough place to play. I don’t think there’s many teams that have gone over there from the northern hemisphere and won. 

“We’ve had that experience of playing there as a group, or most of us have, so I suppose that takes away the surprise about how you might be feeling in the game with the altitude. We know it’s going to be hot, we know we’re going to be gasping for air at some points in the match but that’s something you can get your head around early and then we can focus on the game.”

“South African trips are always tough for everyone. But with the position we’re in it’s going to be a massive couple of games to try to consolidate our place at the top of the league. I’m looking forward to the challenge that both teams bring.

“It’s hard to describe, you seem to lose your breath that bit sooner than you would in a game in Scotland so you’ve got to manage it.

“It’s something we’ve been working on as a group and we’ve had some techniques that the strength and conditioning guys have brought in that can help you during the match.

“Breath holds on Wattbikes, and stuff like that to get you used to the feeling of more carbon dioxide in your system and then being able to regulate your breathing from there.

“I think it’s been beneficial. I think it gets you used to that feeling because it’s obviously hard to emulate it when you’re on the pitch in Scotland. It gets people’s heads around what they might be feeling in the game and then it doesn’t come as too much of a surprise.”