Get involved! Send your photos, video, news & views by texting WN NEWS to 80360 or e-mail us
Warriors wing man Drauniniu targets top tournament
10:30am Friday 18th January 2013 in Sport
JOSH Drauniniu believes Worcester Warriors have what it takes to finally force their way into the ranks of the Heineken Cup.
The flying wing is riding the crest of a wave at Sixways having signed a new contract this week, just days after scorching over for a hat-trick in the 80-17 Amlin Challenge Cup victory at Rovigo.
Retained in the side for tomorrow’s match against Gernika, he is aiming to build on his latest performance to keep Samoa star David Lemi and Scotland international Nikki Walker on their toes.
But, with the squad head coach Richard Hill has at his disposal, Drauniniu relishes the competition and reckons there is the capability to bring success to Sixways.
Although Warriors are currently ninth in the Aviva Premiership and not putting significant pressure on the top six, Drauniniu sees a bright future.
He said: “Without a doubt in my mind, with the players we have, I think we have the potential to be a Heineken Cup team.
“I think we’re a great team with a fantastic stadium. The fans are great and that’s why I wanted to stay here. I am very happy that I have signed for another two years.
“We’ve got nine more Premiership games left so I am looking forward to it, whether I get picked or not my head’s on it. Competition is good for me to compete with these two (Lemi and Walker) for the jersey.
“I can’t wait to get the jersey back on and play with the boys again and see what we can do. Hopefully we can move up the table.”
Drauniniu, 27, is in his second season as a Warrior and has so far crossed the whitehwash 12 times in 18 games, including against Northampton Saints in the Premiership.
The former Navy chef, who came to the attention of Hill while with London Welsh in the Championship, says he didn’t have to think twice about extending his stay at the club.
“We have a great set-up here and everything is within the vicinity of the stadium, some Premiership clubs don’t even have that,” Drauniniu said.
“When they approached me I just told my agent that I didn’t want to go anywhere else, I just want to stay here because I am really settled.
“I love Worcester, it’s amazing. I live in Droitwich which is a smaller, quiet town but I am happy here. The Midlands is great and it’s one of the major factors that made me want to stay.
“I love being here and playing with the team has brought my confidence back up. I can’t wait to get out on the field again.”
He continued: “Last season there were two great wingers here in Marcel Garvey and Miles Benjamin and I learned a lot from both.
“This year, because I’ve left the navy now, I’m more focused and concentrated on just doing this job and progressing.”