FLY-HALF Sam Olver is confident of taking over Jono Lance’s mantle after the Australian’s spell at Worcester Warriors came to an end.

Lance made eight appearances for Warriors and talks had begun over the possibility of extending his contract until the end of the season.

However, the 27-year-old was ruled out of Worcester’s 46-31 loss at Saracens last Saturday with a broken hand and has now flown back to Australia.

The playmaker, who has signed a deal with Melbourne Rebels for the upcoming Super Rugby campaign, also published a message on Twitter thanking Warriors for giving him the chance to play in the Aviva Premiership.

“Successfully surprised the parents back in Australia,” Lance told his Twitter followers.

“But now I can thank Warriors for an amazing three months.

“Great opportunity was given and I hope I did Sixways proud.”

Lance joined Warriors on a three-month deal in October and 23-year-old Olver said he had learned a lot from the ex-Western Force ace.

“Jono is a top bloke,” Olver said.

“He has helped the likes of myself and Jamie Shillcock and he said before he left ‘If you boys ever need any help with anything I will be on the end of a phone’.

“He has obviously got a lot of experience and is not far off being in the Australia squad.

“So to have that calibre of player coming in was only going to benefit the squad.”

With Lance departing and Tom Heathcote out until April with concussion, Olver will battle it out for the number 10 jersey with Shillcock.

Olver was handed his first Premiership start at Saracens and said he was hopeful of retaining his place for Warriors’ home clash against Bath on Friday (7.45pm).

“I was champing at the bit to get that start,” Olver said.

“It came against Sarries and I was overall pretty pleased with my performance.

“There is always things you can improve on, but I was generally pretty happy with how it went so fingers crossed I will get another chance against Bath.”

Olver has turned out nine times for Warriors since making the switch from Northampton Saints in the summer.

At Saracens, the stand-off came up against England and British and Irish Lions star Farrell who weighs over 20kgs more than him.

But Olver insisted he relished the battle and did not believe his smaller frame held him back.

“The nerves are always there, but you have to go in confident otherwise you will just fall away,” Olver added.

“It’s always great to match yourself up against the best and Owen is one of the best in the world at the moment.

“Physically I found it absolutely fine.

“It’s obviously a step up from playing in the Anglo Welsh Cup.

“I am a small guy but I like to tackle. It’s something I have always enjoyed doing and I like that responsibly.

“You are always going to come up against big players in teams and it’s something as a 10 that you have to deal with so I enjoyed the challenge.”