Last weekend McIntyre got a well-deserved start at Franklin’s Gardens and the former Sale Shark enjoyed being involved in the win.
“It was great to get a start, I have had to be patient for a few months since my last one. It was nice to get quite a bit of game time, especially at Franklin’s Gardens, which is a tough place to go. Northampton have got a formidable pack and we knew that as a forward unit we were going to have to lead from the front and that the set piece was going to be paramount to dictating the outcome of the game. I thought we put in a good performance as a pack and it helped us get the win.”
McIntyre made his return to fitness against Northampton after the loosehead prop was unfortunate to pick up an injury against Toulon, which forced him out of the Leinster game.
“Towards the end of the Toulon game I had a slight calf strain so I missed the Leinster game. Luckily I was able to turn it around with the help of the medical team here, so that I was able to make it back for that Northampton game. It was disappointing to miss out on that Leinster game but it was absolutely amazing to watch the boys come together and give the complete display that we did that day. You are always gutted to miss those big European games, it was effectively knock-out rugby and we really put them to the sword. I don’t think they would have come up against an attacking display like that too often.”
The 24 year old will be looking to kick on over the next few weeks, while Wasps focus all their attention on the Aviva Premiership. With a number of Wasps with their national sides, McIntyre believes Wasps’ strength in depth will help the team during this run of eight Aviva Premiership fixtures whilst the Six Nations is taking place.
“I enjoyed playing last week and, from my point of view, it’s not something I just want to be a one off. I always want to push Matt and I want to start more, so these are the sorts of times that I’ll get my opportunity and hopefully I can make the most of it in the coming weeks.
“The depth we have in the front row is fantastic, obviously Cittadini is away with Italy and Jake (Cooper-Woolley) was injured a few weeks ago and then we had Phil Swainston coming in and he is an excellent prop as well. Tom Bristow is coming on leaps and bounds all of the time, so the front row is very competitive, as are all positions at the club right now. You’ve got two or three guys in each position who can start and it is really good for the squad as a whole that we are able to push each other and get the best out of each other.”
Once again this weekend, McIntyre is hoping Wasps can put in a good level of performance, as they look to secure a third straight win at home.
“All home games are massive for us, we’ve had a few tough results at home this season, but we’re coming off the back of some good wins and it is important that we back it up this week with another good performance. If we get our details right, we back ourselves to win at home. So it is a good opportunity to build some momentum for the next few weeks.”
Newcastle’s latest win over Harlequins at the weekend proved how much of a threat they can pose to the sides at the top end of the table, and McIntyre says he’s well aware of just how good Newcastle can be.
“I don’t think the league currently reflects how good they are and how competitive they are as a team in each game they play. They have a very good pack and as they showed on the weekend they are not a team that are going to fold after 60 minutes, they will go for the full 80.
“It was much of a surprise to see Andy Goode step in late on in that game last week and put on a bit of a masterclass, that is testament to his class. It will be nice to play him this weekend, I saw him a few weeks ago, before the Leinster game when he was commentating on us and he said he was looking forward to coming back. It’s the sort of game that he will be up for and we know how good he can be if you give him front foot ball, so it is up to us to shut down their play. They aren’t just a one person show, they are a very dogged team. I think they have a very good set piece and they are going to put a lot of heat on us with their mauling game. Like any team, if we allow them to get front foot ball they are going to cause us problems.”
If selected, McIntyre will play his 100th professional career game on Saturday, but he is wholly concentrated on the threat the visitors will pose at the Ricoh Arena.
“It is a proud moment to play my 100th professional game. To get a 100 career games is a fantastic achievement, but I don’t really concentrate on that. I just concentrate on the game and the performance on the day. I’m sure the emotion of it might build up, but it’s all about the game in hand. I’m not really one for looking at stats and it is more important that my level of performance is good and I can contribute to the team.”
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