CENTRE Andy Symons believes Worcester Warriors have the squad to maintain their challenge on three fronts.

With more than three months of the season already over, Warriors are second in the Greene King IPA Championship with seven wins from eight matches.

They have also gone unbeaten in reaching the British and Irish Cup quarter-finals with a game to spare and host Newcastle Falcons on Monday in the Aviva ‘A’ League Northern Conference bidding for a fifth straight victory in their quest to reach the semi-finals.

While the cynics might say this is no less than should be expected of Warriors, director of rugby Dean Ryan is building for the future and a winning streak like this can’t be doing the Sixways players any harm.

Symons, in his second season at Sixways, has been impressed with the quality of the squad assembled by Ryan and insists competition for shirts is intense.

“It’s been different to last season with a bigger squad that’s very competitive so standards are definitely higher,” he said.

“It just shows how competitive the environment is, we have got a really big squad and anyone can step in at any time.

“You’re constantly looking over your shoulder so that’s vital moving forward.

“We all get on well, which is great, and we all want to help each other out. At the end of the day, we all want to succeed and do well as a club.

“Having a bigger squad has been really helpful. The guys that have come in have gelled really well so the environment is great, although I enjoyed last season as well.

“We have got great coaches and facilities here so it makes it very easy to develop and get better.”

Symons arrived at Sixways last November from New Zealand side Tasman Makos but spent three months on the sidelines with a broken collar bone.

He eventually went on to make 10 appearances, scoring two tries, and has been involved in all but one of the Championship matches this term.

The English-born 23-year-old also played against Moseley in October’s B&I Cup clash and is expected to feature against Nottingham at Sixways in Pool Three today (2pm).

But Symons is just happy to have put his injury woe firmly behind him and is aiming to establish himself at the club.

He said: “I am just trying to stay healthy and try to help the team as much as possible, whether that’s coming off the bench or starting.

“I am trying to push the other boys to try to get that number 12 jersey.

“The Championship gives you that opportunity to really play a lot of games, as well as the B&I Cup and ‘A’ League. It’s great for me to be able to get some game time.”