Back row forward, Matt Rogerson has just completed his first year wearing the London Irish jersey, impressing in his 23 appearances for the Exiles.
Following promotion back into the top tier of English rugby, Rogerson is fully aware of the fresh tests that awaits the squad this season.
“Winning the Championship was great for us but, we understand that this year will be a whole new challenge.
“The Premiership brings a whole new level of physicality, intensity and accuracy. Some of the teams we will face, like Saracens and Exeter, are going to be huge challenges and we can’t wait to get going.”
One of the biggest attractions of the Gallagher Premiership is the calibre of players that the teams possess, and Rogerson is looking forward to pitting himself against the best players possible.
“A lot of the teams in the top division have phenomenal back rows. People like Billy Vunipola and the rest of them are an exciting challenge for me and I am looking forward to testing myself against some brilliant players.”
After settling in quickly at the Exiles, Rogerson explained how the close-knit group have helped each other throughout the year and expects this to continue into the new season.
“Where I live, Harry Elrington and Dave Porecki are close to me. We naturally have grown closer because of that, outside of rugby.
“I think as a wider group, we have bonded and as a whole unit we are quite close. I think this will play a big part in our progression as a team next season as well.”
With just under 50 days until the Rugby World Cup kicks-off, Rogerson is hoping for strong run from England but, holds high hopes for his teammates heading to Japan in the summer.
“In terms of winning the Rugby World Cup, you can never look past the All Blacks, although I would love to see England go and do the job!
“In terms of ‘surprise packages’, I think Fiji could do a good job. Obviously, they have a couple of our lads in Alivereti Veitokani and Albert Tuisue. They’ve looked good in the Pacific Nations Cup and great for us last year so hopefully they do well.”
To see Matt and the rest of the squad in action in the 2019/20 campaign, click here.