11:51am Tuesday 18th March 2014
By Stuart Amos
London Scottish back row Chevvy Pennycook reckons next season could be a big one for the exiles if they miss a top-four Championship finish this time around.
Pennycook and felllow loose forward Ben Russell both need new two-year contracts yesterday as Scottish - currently eight points adrift of the play-offs places - prepare for Saturday's trip to Moseley.
Former England U20 international Pennycook has been one of Scottish's stand-out performers again this season having been selected in the RFU Championship Dream XV last term.
And the 26-year-old, who will face one of his former clubs at the weekend, reckoned the Athletic Ground outfit was heading in the right direction under head coach James Buckland irrespective of how this season finishes.
"The club is going in the right direction on the park and we have created a really good environment off it," he said.
"I think we can target a big season next year.
"We are still in the hunt for a top four finish but if we don't achieve that this year, it is a big objective of ours next season.
"We have a good core of players from this season's squad staying and if we can add a few new faces that would make us even stronger.”
Russell, who joined the club in 2012 from London Welsh, has been restricted to just 14 appearances this term due to injury and the form of Pennycook, skipper Mark Bright and Neil Best.
But Buckland was more than happy to sign up the 31-year-old for another two campaigns.
"We are fortunate to have some high calibre back-row players in our squad and we see both Chevvy and Ben playing prominent roles at London Scottish over the next two seasons," he added.
"Chevvy has been outstanding this season putting in some great defensive shifts and with Mark Bright near the top of the try scoring charts, it's easy to see why our back-row unit compliments itself really well.
"Ben at times has been outstanding this season, even when coming off the bench.
"He is a highly consistent player and a top professional to have around the club.”
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