Joe Marchant insists “there is still a long way to go” as he continues to improve his rugby game.
The 20-year-old has been a major beneficiary of this summer’s call ups for the British & Irish Lions tour, becoming part of England’s plans and preparing for a two-match Test series in Argentina.
He has already said he is not just going there to make up the numbers, although, performances at the Twickenham Stoop have made this call-up far from a surprise.
The youngster was shortlisted for the Land Rover Discovery of the Season award, taking his place at the Aviva Premiership Rugby Awards last Wednesday.
He missed out to Leicester Tigers’ Ellis Genge at the London Lancaster Hotel but, with time undoubtedly on his side, the only way seems to be up for the Winchester-born back.
“It’s been a good season, I’ve really enjoyed how lucky I’ve been to get so much game time and I’ve been trying to learn as much as I can, but there’s still a long way to go," he said.
“If you make wrong decisions then it can really cost the team, so I’ve been working really hard and learning from mistakes in games – there have been a few, but every time something bad happens you try to think about what you can do next time.
“Later on in the season I’ve been feeling more comfortable, getting in the situations that I’m feeling familiar with and being able to adapt better.
“Defence is a big thing for me to focus on, I need to make sure I get over any mistakes, but I love getting the ball in hand and having a go. There are some good players around as well, so it’s good to be linking up with them and scoring loads of tries.
“I just have to start training hard and work well, and if that goes well then I might be able to get some games in Argentina.”
Marchant was nominated for the 2016/17 Land Rover Discovery of the Season award, thanks to his eye-catching performances for Harlequins throughout the course of the Premiership Rugby season.
Land Rover is a long-standing supporter of rugby at all levels; from grassroots to elite and the Official Vehicle Partner of Premiership Rugby is committed to using this award to acknowledge the best young rugby player from each season.
With the likes of Mike Brown, Chris Robshaw and Nick Easter at the Twickenham Stoop, Marchant is not short of options for a word of advice on his development.
Joe Marchant in action
And with a youthful team joining him on the plane to Argentina, the former England U18 and U20 international is keen to get ahead of the game on the way to what he hopes can be a long and successful career.
“Mike Brown has been really good at the back, it’s good that we can chat and he’s always helping me through things, but my mentor at the club this year has been George Lowe,” he said.
“He’s got a lot of knowledge and is a good guy, been there and trains quite hard. Nick Easter is there as the defence coach so I’ve been trying to tap into that.
“It’s been a good camp, we haven’t spoken loads but we need to make sure we get everything up to the speed as it was before the guys went away with the Lions.
“We want to go there (to Argentina) and win, but it would be nice with the young guys around to get the experience with them as well.”
*Joe Marchant was speaking on behalf of Land Rover, the Official Vehicle Partner of Premiership Rugby. Land Rover has a heritage in supporting rugby at all levels; from grassroots to elite. Follow @LandRoverRugby #WeDealInReal.