Planet Rugby

Irish focusing on next season

30th March 2014 12:17

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brian smith london irish

In limbo: Brian Smith

Safe from relegation but unable to make the top six, London Irish boss Brian Smith admits attention is turning towards next season.

Irish lost to Harlequins at The Stoop on Saturday but are 20 points clear of bottom club Worcester with four games to go.

With little left to play for, Smith admits the focus is on nurturing players for the future.

Irish also lost George Skivington, Kieran Low and Eamonn Sheridan before kickoff as all three failed late fitness tests, handing a Premiership first start to 18-year-old centre Tom Fowlie.

"We're in limbo now. We're looking up at the table thinking we can maybe catch the next team above us," said Smith.

"We can't do much more than that because there are only four fixtures left, so we're looking at the future.

"Obviously we want to win our home games and be competitive. Of course we want to win, but we also have one eye on next season.

"Giving game time to the younger blokes is part of the long-term plan."

Irish have recruited well for next season, with Tom Court, Tom Guest, Luke Narraway, Geoff Cross and Eoin Griffin all joining the Exiles next season with more to come.

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