SCRUM-HALF Jono Kitto is “driving standards of excellence” at Worcester Warriors according to talented back Jamie Shillcock.

Kitto spent two seasons at Leicester Tigers before having short stints at Gallagher Premiership rivals Warriors and Harlequins.

The 27-year-old returned to Worcester this summer after playing in his native New Zealand and Shillcock says his team-mate is already having a positive influence at the club.

Shillcock revealed a frank conversation with Kitto during his loan spell in 2017 hit him “quite hard” but insisted the number nine’s views on the players’ mindset “made sense”.

“The attitude and culture have changed massively,” said Shillcock when reflecting on his four years in Warriors’ senior squad.

“Last time Kitto was here we were struggling for a win and I remember him saying ‘Why are the guys still enjoying coming in on a Monday? We should be really angry with ourselves that we are not getting performances’.

“That actually hit me quite hard but it made sense.

“Why are we still the same whether we have won or lost?

“I think we are getting to that point where we come in and say that’s not good enough, we need to do better and should be doing better.

“We are driving standards and are a completely different team to where we were four years ago when we couldn’t get a win for ages.

“Now we have started off the season really well.”

On Warriors’ attitude, Shillcock said: “It’s something you don’t really pick up on unless someone else points it out to you because you don’t know any different.

“It was my second year so I didn’t know much different whereas Kitto was a guy who had come from Leicester when they were going really well.

“He said that if Leicester lost they would be so disappointed and the mood in the camp would be one of frustration that they were not playing to their best.

“I am not saying that we have to be moody on a Monday but we are getting to a point where we know we should have done better.”

Warriors let slip a 17-3 lead to lose 24-20 to Exeter Chiefs at Sixways but bounced back with an impressive comeback 19-14 win at Harlequins.

“We harnessed that frustration as we knew that we cost ourselves the game,” Shillcock said on responding to the Exeter defeat.

“I think we have started to realise that we can control a lot more than we think and we can push on and use stuff that we have not done on the previous weekend and go and execute the weekend after.”

Shillcock may only be 22 years old but with 50 first-team appearances to his name he believes his views are now being heard.

“I feel like I have been around a bit now with regards to Worcester,” Shillcock said.

“It’s nice to be able to show the newer guys the way around the club and those guys are bringing other stuff too.

“Like Kitto who is driving standards of excellence in the early part of the week.

“The fly-half side of me is trying to drive people and dictate things which I am getting used to the older I get because when I was 17 or 18 people might not have taken me too seriously.

“Now I am a bit older people start to think he is actually making a good point here!”