Former Bedford School boy, Fraser Dingwall, has been announced as captain for the England Under-20s for tonight’s Six Nations opener against Ireland in Cork.
The Bedford Independent caught up with the Northampton Saints outside centre, who is hoping to start the Six Nations campaign with a bang.
Dingwall, 19, stated “the first game is key for us to get off to a good start. We know the challenge that faces us in Ireland, and we will have to be on the top of our game.
“We had a good year last year, one which I really enjoyed but we seemed to full short both in the Six Nations, with a lost to Scotland, and then at the Junior World Championship where we lost to a strong French side in the final.”
Dingwall’s willingness to go one better than last season is boosted by a squad around him with plenty of quality and experience.
“We have a really good group, with a lot of competition for places and plenty of the guys who have had Premiership rugby experience. Boys are high on confidence from playing with their clubs. I think the coaching staff will struggle to select the team sometimes” said Dingwall.
It seems the Saints’ flyer however will be one of the first on the team list, known at his club as a young leader, he’s hoping to emulate that role with captaining his national side.
“I’ve had a good amount of exposure over the last few months and hopefully I can transfer that over to this squad. I always try and lead. I think it’s one of the qualities that I fortunately have.
“I’m lucky that I’m surrounded by plenty of guys in the squad who also have leadership qualities. Hopefully I can give good advice to maybe younger players in the squad in terms as to what expect from the competition” said the ex-Bedford School boy.
Bedford can get behind Dingwall and the England Under-20s when Goldington Road hosts their game against Italy Under-20s on Friday night 8thMarch (kick off 19:45).
The 19-year-old is looking forward to the home support. “I’ve already had several people message me about the game.
“I imagine plenty of Bedford school boys, both current and ex-pupils will try and get down, along with Bedford Blues players past and present.
“Obviously, Tom Hardwick, former Bedford Modern boy is likewise very excited to get back to familiar territory.
“Hopefully it’s a great occasion for Goldington Road and the Bedford community can get behind us like they do for the Blues.”