Fans cheered us to victory in Italy: Townsend

Gregor Townsend has praised the travelling support during Glasgow Warriors 28-35 victory over Benetton Treviso.

Hundreds of Glasgow fans were present in the Stadio Comunale di Monigo to witness a late match winning try after Treviso had clawed back to level the scores.

He said: “It was a brilliant end to the year and great to have so many supporters in Italy.

“There must have been two to three hundred there and they helped us along a lot in that end part of the game.

“Treviso had really played well and decisions didn’t go our way so I’m delighted to get through this game.

“It was always going to be a tricky one and to come away with maximum points is great for us as we try and get back up to the top four.”

Glasgow’s fourth win on the bounce means they jump two places up to fourth in the Guinness PRO12 and Townsend is looking for more positive performances going into another crucial run of matches to start 2017.

He said: “It’s been a good last four games, three of which have been away from home so the character of the squad has really shone through.

“That character got us through yesterday in the last five minutes when we were under severe pressure and Treviso had momentum and the crowd behind them.

“Going down a try early on is not how you want to start an away game, they had the crowd behind them and they played really well.

“They’re an improved side who defend aggressively and played positive rugby today. You can tell why they they’ve won three on the bounce so it was a good win for us.

“We’ve got another huge league game coming up against Cardiff and then it’s back to Europe so we’re going to have to work hard to keep this run going.”

Stuart Hogg started a game for Glasgow at stand-off for the first time and Townsend is pleased with how the Scotland International made the transition. “

Stuart was great” he said “especially his goal kicking, a 100% record on his first game as our first choice goal kicker is fantastic.

“His intercept try was excellent, to go the length of the field when an international winger is chasing you shows just how quick he is.

“It will be a game for him to grow as a rugby player. He will have more understanding of the depth you need at first receiver, the decisions you have to make and the time you have on the ball.”

Hogg’s try was one of five for the Warriors and Townsend is very pleased with the way all of the scores were executed.

He said: “I thought the Tommy Seymour try was excellent, really crisp passing from the backs.

“It would be a great clip to show young players, especially young half backs, as the support play from Henry Pyrgos and Stuart Hogg was great.

“They both supported their passes and either one of them could have scored. There was also really accurate passing from Nick Grigg and Peter Murchie to eventually release Tommy. “

“Nick Grigg showed real strength to go one extra meter to get to the line for his try and Adam Ashe ran a hard line and had a good fend for his score.

“The last try was a great bit of play. To get the ball under pressure, move it wide and for Sean Lamont to have the awareness that he was up against a front rower on the wing and show really good pace was superb.

“To then pass with accuracy to set Tommy free and for Rory Clegg to also be following up his own ball and get an important score for us was really pleasing.”

The game saw Rob Harley reach his 150th appearance for the Glasgow Warriors, something he should be extremely proud of according to his head coach.

Townsend said: “Rob Harley came on in the second row and did a job, he was his usually industrious self and he has been really consistent for the seven years he’s been with a Warriors.

“There’s a reason he’s reached 150 games it’s because he trains so hard, he’s a professional and he plays at 100%, it’s great for him that he’ll be able to remember his 150th as a positive victory.

“A mention to Nemia Kenatale as well, he has been involved a few times so it’s great for him to get on  to make his debut and he added a bit of spark at the end with a little run which was good to see.”