Simon Shaw on his Test call up

Simon Shaw, who starts his first Lions test on Saturday, talks to www.lionsrugby.com. [more]

Lions Australia Tour 2013

Simon Shaw, who starts his first Lions test on Saturday, talks to www.lionsrugby.com.

On the time it’s taken to secure a Test start
It’s been a long while. Mid way through the season I didn’t really think I had a chance of even making the plane so it’s a been a lot of hard work even at start of this tour which start didn’t start terribly well for me, I started to have thoughts that I’d go back again emptied handed in terms of Test caps.

On the call up and if it was a surprise
I’ve learnt you’ve just got to keep plugging away and keep trying and then hopefully someone will see something positive in you and give you a chance and I can’t wait to get that chance to run out there.

On who or what keeps him keeping the faith
I think it’s just self belief. Your friends and your family will keep telling you that you’re the best but at the end of the day you have to believe it yourself and I just kept trying to believe it and it’s finally happened.

On telling his parents the news
I’ve texted them but they are on safari and they’ve probably not got signal because I haven’t heard back! They will be chuffed to bits – they cry at most Wasps games so I’d hate to see them after the weekend!

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On his age and the jibes on tour
A lot of people are calling me Dad but no worse than that – few comments about my grey hair but I can put up with that – I really don’t feel I’m very grown up I’m a bit of a child anyway maturity hasn’t really hit me yet!!

On why he thinks he was called up
I think it will be to help in stopping mauls and stopping them driving us back in the scrum. Playing against the Springboks is a very physical challenge and hopefully what I’ve done on this tour up to now has proved that I can still do that and the coaches seem to have faith in me to do that in a Test match.

On how difficult was it last week to watch from the sidelines
When the Test squads are announced it’s a pretty miserable time if you’re not selected but the day after you learn to justify it in your brain and accept it. You just keep trying and the next time you get an opportunity to show what you can do take it.

There are a lot of things that go through your head sat there watching the game but ultimately we are all here for one reason – to beat the Boks – and whether I’ve been selected this week or not I’d have offered my advice for the following week.

It’s been a fantastic tour in terms of how people have mucked in and helped each other out throughout the tour and I’ve been pitching in to do my bit to help whether selected or not.

Is the fear that the series could be over come Saturday motivating the team
I think you focus on the previous weeks and things that haven’t gone well and things that have gone very well – there are a huge amount of positives that have come out of last week and worrying about whether we lose isn’t going to help that. Thinking about whether we loose shouldn’t be entering our minds we should be very confident that we have the ability to beat the Boks.

On whether this game stands as the ultimate game in his career
I think so. At this stage in my career I have leant to appreciate every little bit that much more than I used to. There are guys that have got on this tour having played a handful of games and had every belief they were going to be on the tour – I can’t take anything for granted these days and I just treasure everything that happens. It will be the ultimate – but there will be a sour taste if we loose. It will be a very special day whatever happens – just extra special if we win.

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