Mark McMillan eager to stay at Bath Rugby despite limited action
Mark McMillan is eager to stay at Bath Rugby, despite enjoying limited first-team game time during his two-and-a-half year stint at the club, writesHarry Abbott.
The Scottish scrum-half has been behind Michael Claassens in the pecking order since arriving at The Rec from Glasgow Warriors in 2010.
McMillan earned just a second start of the season in Saturday's LV= Cup victory over Newport Gwent Dragons before limping off with a knock. He was previously named in the starting XV during the victorious Amlin Cup opener at Bucharest Wolves.
"This is my third season at Bath and my contract is up, like some other guys, so we all want to prove a point," said McMillan, who turns 30 at the end of the season.
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"I thoroughly enjoy being at the club and involved in the environment created by the coaches we have here.
"It's an intense environment but a focused one as well. No stone is left unturned in preparation and every player would argue that it allows them to improve.
"It's a good place to be and I'd like to be a part of it in the future, for sure."
Although a new deal has yet to be discussed, McMillan – who is expected to retain his place for tomorrow's trip to Harlequins – wants a strong showing to urge head coach Gary Gold to open negotiations.
"If given the chance to play, of course it's important for me to perform to stake my claim for a future contract at Bath," said McMillan.
"It's not something that's been discussed much. I think it's a decision the coaches will take in due course. It's certainly coming around to that time.
"Although the contract situation is an inevitable thing, you try not to think about it too much and just think that if I get an opportunity I've got to play well. Then if I play well, things will happen perhaps.
"I don't want that at the forefront of my mind. I have to push it to the back and instead focus on the job in hand. The rest will take care of itself.
"Any game can have a bearing on it. There's such an intensity around training that we are constantly assessed and evaluated.
"I am desperate to get an opportunity to prove to the coaches that I am worthy of a playing spot or at least putting pressure on Michael.
"In my view he's been outstanding this season and a real mainstay throughout the previous few seasons.
"Hopefully I can get an opportunity to show everyone I am still around."