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Hamish Watson issues Lions tour warning to Edinburgh team-mates facing Sharks

By PA
(Photo by David Rogers/Getty Images)

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Edinburgh flanker Hamish Watson warned his and his team-mate’s previous experience in South Africa can only prepare them so much for Saturday’s clash with the Stormers.

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Mike Blair’s side have travelled to Cape Town for the United Rugby Championship quarter-finals and are looking to repeat previous success in the country.

Edinburgh became the first northern hemisphere team to win a URC game in South Africa this season when they beat Sharks 21-5 in Durban.

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Although the match was played in torrential rain, the heat and humidity was very unlike Scottish conditions.

Watson spent last summer in South Africa on tour with the British and Irish Lions and he came off the bench as the tourists beat the world champions in the opening Test in the 55,00-seat DHL Arena where Edinburgh will play on Saturday.

The 30-year-old said: “Sharks was a tough game for them, the conditions probably favoured us as well. It was chucking it down that day. We controlled the game really well.

“This weekend we are expecting good weather and it will be a completely different game.

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“But we have got to control the game, play in the right areas. We know how dangerous they are, they have got a very big pack, and a really good back three and dangerous on the counter-attacks.

“The summer stuff doesn’t really apply because when we played those clubs they were without all their internationals. It’s a bit different, we obviously had a very strong squad in the summer.

“It helps maybe from my point of view, having been in South Africa quite a bit over the last year, and played in the same stadium that we will play at the weekend, but apart from that it’s more focusing on the Edinburgh side of things.

“It’s a great ground to play in and we can’t wait to get out there in a huge quarter-final for the club.”

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