Ford Driving On To Next Challenge

ImageRoss Ford says scoring a try during Scotland's win in Argentina was one of the highlights of his career so far and the hooker revealed he is now aiming to follow up that achievement by helping to take Edinburgh onto the next level.

The 24-year-old front rower crossed the whitewash in Buenos Aires as Scotland registered a historic victory on southern hemisphere soil when he finished off an enthralling move.

Now he is targeting even greater improvements during his second season in the black and red shirt of Scotland's number one team as Edinburgh look to build on the foundations laid last year.

Ross is in for next season and you can join in a team that an inspirational capital can be proud of by signing up for a 2008/2009 Edinburgh Rugby Club season ticket. The package entitles supporters to watch all nine home matches in the Magners League and all three home games in the Pool stages of the Heineken Cup. Plus now the pre-season friendly match against London Wasps on Saturday 23 August is included and every season ticket holder is entitled to bring a friend to the game for FREE. Call 0131 346 5180 to reserve your place at The Castle and get closer to your club.

Ford said: "It is definitely up there with my best achievements in rugby. Winning away from home is tough to do, especially in international rugby and against a team like Argentina.

'the atmosphere over there was really memorable and to win the match was a great achievement.

"I think everybody knew what we had to do after the first Test. We had a lot of possession, but we just didn't play to the standards that we had set ourselves.

"But in the second Test we cleaned up the breakdown area and Mike (Blair) got a lot of clean ball for once. He was able to play the ball a lot quicker and we showed what we can do when we get a bit of quick ball. Ben Cairns had a great game and we opened them up three times."

The old adage states that "familiarity breeds contempt" but Ford believes the on-field understanding shown by the Buenos Aires 11 (with 10 Edinburgh players in the starting line-up) played a pivotal role in ensuring Scotland won.

He added: "In some respects, the fact that so many of us played with each other every week for Edinburgh helped.

"You know what everyone is going to do and you are aware of what happens in certain positions; like you know Godders (Phil Godman) will take it to the line every time and he is usually going to get the ball to you. It does help in that way and that was quite good for us.

Ford modestly underplays his try-scoring feat against the World Cup semi-finalists in their own backyard and claims he was just in the right place at the right time.

He said: "It was a usual effort from me; a two-yard dart over the line. There had been good build-up play through pressure and I was lucky enough to get my hands on the ball and score."

His dot down in Buenos Aires followed his effort against Leicester in the Heineken Cup back in January which was later voted Scottish Rugby's Try of the Year.

But Ford shrugs off the praise and says that it was a team effort; something Edinburgh are becoming incredibly good at.

He said: 'that try sums up the way Edinburgh plays; we can score tries from anywhere. That move started in our own 22 and we ended up scoring up the other end with everyone involved.

'that is the mindset in the whole Edinburgh squad; to make things happen from all over the pitch. We just want to go out there and make things happen."

With the countdown continuing towards the big kick-off and the entire Edinburgh squad now back in for the pre-season programme, Ford revealed there is genuine optimism in the camp towards bettering last term's fourth place finish.

He said: "I would say our chances of doing well are pretty strong. We"ve kept the same good group of players, who have got a lot of potential. Hopefully this year we can fulfil that potential.

"At the start of last season, nobody expected we would finish where we did. Now it has happened, this year everyone will be more aware of us, but hopefully we can do even better and finish even higher in the Magners League."

As the first signing of the Andy Robinson regime, Ford has welcomed the arrivals of Jim Hamilton and Chris Paterson into the Edinburgh fold and says the pair will strengthen an already vibrant young squad.

He said: 'they add even mores strength in depth into the squad. With Mossy coming in, we"ve got a world-class goalkicker with a lot of experience. He has played in England, he is Scotland's most-capped player and he has got so much more to give to the younger boys.

"He can show them how to do it and the younger boys can push him as hard as he wants. Jim is another good signing who has played for Leicester and has a lot of experience. It certainly bodes well for the future."