Macauley Cook is desperate to nail down a starting place under new Cardiff Blues boss Mark 'The Hammer' Hammett
The former All Black hooker takes the reigns at the BT Sport Arms Park tonight when English Premiership side Exeter Chiefs visit the capital for a pre-season friendly.
"We all want will want to impress on Friday and we have got to look forward to working with Mark," said Cook. "We know he will be here on Friday and we've heard a lot of good things about him and he has done a top job in New Zealand."
Dale McIntosh and Paul John steered the Blues to a seventh placed PRO12 finish last season after they engineered four wins from the region's last seven games. And the new-look Blues are looking to continue their revival against Zebre when the sides meet in the league opener on Sunday, September 7.
"We have two really good coaches here in Dale McIntosh and Paul John who have done a great job all pre-season. We have a lot of new boys this season and they have fitted in really well. That is credit to the structure and environment we have here," added Cook.
"We have a big squad and hopefully, if all goes well, we can pull off some good results and go well."
Cook's performances earned him a place in the Wales possibles team for the International trial match last season.
He did not make the touring party but the former Wales Under-20 captain has won the first battle for the Blues number six shirt after he was named in the starting lineup for Friday's warm up match.
"Josh Turnbull coming in is a bonus for the squad and the team. He is a great player and I watched him over the summer and he did well in South Africa," said Cook.
"I'm going to thrive on the challenge of getting the six jersey and I know he will do the same. We will push each other and that is a positive."
British and Irish Lions head coach Warren Gatland will be heading back home to take on the All Blacks next year where for him, success for 2017 is all about going to New Zealand and winning a Test Series.
James Davies was one of three Welsh players announced in Team GB's men's sevens squad for Rio yesterday at a sweltering Trafalgar Square. WRU TV's Graeme Gillespie battles with a Japanese tour guide as 'Cubby' reveals who has made his teammate, Sam Cross, the player he is today.
Robin McBryde and son Billy are set to represent Wales on either side of the globe over the coming weeks with Robin travelling to New Zealand as Wales assistant coach and Billy competing at the World Rugby U20 Championship (Manchester, June 7-25). WRU TV caught up with the pair and captured a unique perspective into the factors that produce such a high-achieving rugby family.
Wales assistant coach Robin McBryde is predicting a tough battle against England on Sunday despite the fact they may not be considered to be at full strength. Players will be out to impress Eddie Jones which makes England a dangerous proposition, he says.
Cardiff Blues hung on to win 23-21 in Italy and extend their unbeaten run in the Guinness PRO12 to four matches.
Having lost five and drawn one of their last 10 PRO12 visits to Italy the Blues travelled hoping to end their Italian curse.
The Welsh Rugby Union, together with Pro Rugby Wales, has secured significantly improved insurance cover for all registered players, coaches and referees at each of its member clubs and regions at reduced costs -working with Aon, one of the world's largest insurance brokers and risk advisors.