Rennie makes early impact in Glasgow

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    26 Sep 2017     Getty Images

That ended a four-game losing streak for Glasgow against Munster and one of the key contributors to the win was former Hurricanes and Manawatu flanker Callum Gibbins.
The Scotsman newspaper remarked that Gibbins was 'fast becoming a cult hero in these parts'.

Rennie's comments after the game, which lifted Glasgow four points clear in their group in the league, summed up his feelings. "I've been a bit grumpy over the past few weeks, but that was quality. We used the ball really well. We put them under pressure from turnover ball. It was great.

"There's a long way to go, but we made some good strides," he said.

Glasgow's revival, and the prospect of a rejuvenated Scotland playing the All Blacks in November, has lifted interest and Rennie, the former Chiefs and New Zealand Under-20s coach, has been sought for his views on New Zealand's game.

He told the BBC recently: "The biggest difference between New Zealand rugby and the rest of the world is not the backs, even though the All Blacks have some great backs. There are fantastic backs all around the world and I look over here and there are some great loose forwards, as good as anything New Zealand can churn out.

"Often the difference is in the tight-five. Not from a set-piece point of view but in the rest of the game. It's around skill-set.

"The All Blacks tend to have big men who have great footwork and great hands, so you have numbers one to 15 who can get the ball out of the hands under pressure and get in behind and offload.

"I reckon that's the significant difference. You have a lot of big men over here who are good at carrying and don't give a hell of a lot beyond that," he said.

The message was clear that skills development was going to be on the menu for the big men in the Glasgow operation.

"That's something we've talked about here with our forwards. It we want to play a more expansive game, we need our big men handling better and having the footwork to get in behind defences and keep ball alive.

"We don't want a wall of defenders all over our backs each weekend. Glasgow have always played a fast game. We want to play it even faster. We want to have a brutality about what we do," he said.