Planet Rugby

Hamilton relishing Boks challenge

16th November 2013 13:16

Share:

SKY_MOBILE Jim Hamilton Scotland

Powerhouse: Jim Hamilton

Scotland second-row Jim Hamilton knows he needs a big performance on Sunday to cement his place in Scott Johnson's starting lineup.

The Scots welcome a physical South African side to Murrayfield this weekend, and the clash is the first chance the 6ft 8in workhorse has had to impress in this year's November Tests.

And with such stiff competition for the two starting lock berths from the likes of Tim Swinson (last week's Man of the Match against Japan), Richie and Jonny Gray and Al Kellock, Hamilton is aware of the need for a solid display.

"Jonny and Tim have been fantastic. I've watched their progress over the last year or two," Hamilton told the Daily Record.

"The way Tim performed in his first Murrayfield international last week against Japan was brilliant.

"People claim all competition is great - and they are correct.

"When you get up in the morning stiff and achey you just have to remember that these young lads are snapping at your heels.

"It just makes you all the more determined to improve and improve again so you can keep that jersey."

The giant second-row, now 30 years old, admits the future rests with the likes of Swinson and Gray Jnr, both of whom have been standouts amid Glasgow Warriors' fine early-season form.

"On one hand you never want to give up but on the other you know you are not going to go on for ever," acknowledged Hamilton.

"As much as anyone I want to see Scotland do well and be successful so to have these guys coming through makes you realise you would be leaving the team in good shape when the time comes.

"There certainly will be pressure on Richie Gray and me at the weekend and that is the way it should be. The competition for places is definitely the strongest I have known during my Test career.

"It is only right that with the World Cup a couple of years away, we have a long-term plan."

Hamilton will go head-to-head with infamously bruising Springbok counterpart Bakkie Botha, with the 34-year-old recalled to Heyneke Meyer's touring squad after a three-year absence from the Test arena.

Botha plies his trade with Toulon in the Top14 - where Hamilton also represents Montpellier - and the Scot can perhaps take encouragement from the Bok's longevity.

"From the day I left for France two years ago I always said to myself every morning at the gym in Toulon, 'I still want to play in the green and gold'," said Botha.

"I'm taking it week to week and I'm just happy to be part of this amazing squad after two years."

Forthcoming Fixtures
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Heineken Cup
Saturday , April 26
Saracens vs Clermont Auvergne15:40
Sunday , April 27
Toulon vs Munster15:30
More Heineken Cup fixtures
RaboDirect PRO12
Saturday , April 26
Glasgow vs EdinburghGlasgow vs Edinburgh Preview
More RaboDirect PRO12 fixtures
Amlin Challenge Cup
Friday , April 25
Northampton vs HarlequinsNorthampton vs Harlequins Preview
Sunday , April 27
Wasps vs Bath13:00
More Amlin Challenge Cup fixtures
Super Rugby
Friday , April 25
Blues vs WaratahsBlues vs Waratahs Preview
Brumbies vs ChiefsBrumbies vs Chiefs Preview
Sharks vs HighlandersSharks vs Highlanders Preview
Saturday , April 26
Hurricanes vs Reds19:35
Western Force vs Bulls17:40
Cheetahs vs Stormers17:05
More Super Rugby fixtures
Recent Results
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Aviva Premiership
Sunday , April 20
Northampton 36 - 21 London IrishNorthampton vs London Irish Report
Newcastle 18 - 23 SaracensNewcastle vs Saracens Report
More Aviva Premiership results
RaboDirect PRO12
Cardiff Blues 17 - 13 ScarletsCardiff Blues vs Scarlets Report
Newport Gwent D'gons 10 - 20 Ospreys
More RaboDirect PRO12 results
Aviva Premiership
Saturday , April 19
Bath 32 - 20 WorcesterBath vs Worcester Report
Exeter 12 - 55 SaleExeter vs Sale Report
Wasps 38 - 30 GloucesterWasps vs Gloucester Report
More Aviva Premiership results
RaboDirect PRO12
Zebre 26 - 13 EdinburghZebre vs Edinburgh Report
Connacht 23 - 32 MunsterConnacht vs Munster Report
More RaboDirect PRO12 results
Top 14
Oyonnax 19 - 19 ToulouseOyonnax vs Toulouse Report
Biarritz 19 - 13 Brive
Perpignan 31 - 46 ToulonPerpignan vs Toulon Report
Racing Metro Paris 22 - 6 Clermont AuvergneRacing Metro Paris vs Clermont Auvergne Report
Stade Francais 37 - 23 Bordeaux-Begles
Grenoble 21 - 21 Bayonne
More Top 14 results
Super Rugby
Chiefs 17 - 18 CrusadersChiefs vs Crusaders Report
Sharks 19 - 8 CheetahsSharks vs Cheetahs Report
Waratahs 19 - 12 BullsWaratahs vs Bulls Report
Stormers 18 - 3 LionsStormers vs Lions Report
More Super Rugby results
Aviva Premiership
Friday , April 18
Harlequins 24 - 20 LeicesterHarlequins vs Leicester Report
More Aviva Premiership results
RaboDirect PRO12
Leinster 62 - 7 Benetton TrevisoLeinster vs Benetton Treviso Report
Glasgow 27 - 9 UlsterGlasgow vs Ulster Report
More RaboDirect PRO12 results
Top 14
Castres 22 - 15 MontpellierCastres vs Montpellier Report
More Top 14 results
Super Rugby
Hurricanes 39 - 20 BluesHurricanes vs Blues Report
Melbourne Rebels 22 - 16 Western Force
More Super Rugby results
Aviva Premiership Table
PosTeamPPts
1Saracens2080
2Northampton2071
3Bath2064
4Leicester Tigers2064
5Harlequins2058