RUGBY UNION: Kirwan happy to play down try-scoring battle

9:00am Saturday 30th November 2013

By Ed Mezzetti

GREENE KING IPA CHAMPIONSHIP

CARL Kirwan is enjoying the banter about being London Welsh’s top try-scorer without letting it go to his head.

The flanker was Welsh’s outright leader until last week, when his try at Moseley was bettered by Seb Stegmann’s brace to leave them tied on four apiece.

Kirwan, who starts at openside against Bedford today, has made a big impact since joining Welsh in the summer.

But as for try-scoring, he said: “It is not really something that I have always had in my game.

“I think some of them have been quite fortunate this season. I know it is a cliche, but it’s a team game.

“It is not a massive deal for me, whether I am scoring or not.”

Wing Stegmann may be a better bet to top the Exiles’ try rankings at the end of the season, but he has his work cut out for now.

“We have been taking the mick out of each other,” said Kirwan.

“I was telling him the other week that he should be beating me, but he has caught me back up now.

“We are not too bothered who scores the tries.”

Kirwan has been one of the more consistent selections under head coach Justin Burnell’s rotation policy.

“I try to work pretty hard in training and keep my standards high,” he said.

“The competition within the squad pushes everyone harder.

“In my position, Mike Denbee and Richard Thorpe are really pushing me.

“If I make a slip-up, they will take my place.”

Kirwan and his teammates are going for a tenth straight league win today.

“We don’t want to let that run end,” he said.

“If we can keep up our standards, then we can beat anyone in this league.”

Welsh may have won nine straight league games, but Kirwan said: “We are not very happy with how we have played in the last two weeks.

“Since the Bristol game, we have taken our foot off the accelerator. We are looking for a big impact this week.

“Maybe there was a little bit of complacency slipping in, but we have had a good talk from the coaches.

“Hopefully, we can get back to business and play a style of rugby that can dominate opponents.”

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