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Page last updated at 15:29 GMT, Friday, 3 September 2010 16:29 UK

Prop David Flatman feeling pressure on Bath to deliver

Flatman surprised by England omission

Bath prop David Flatman says there is more pressure than ever to pick up a trophy this season.

Bath have won just one piece of silverware in the last decade after dominating domestic rugby in the late 1980s and early 1990s.

"There's more, of course there is," the England international told BBC Bristol.

"We're under very positive and ambitious new ownership, have great new training facilities and we have to live up to that."

Flatman continued: "But I think the real pressure comes from starting another season as a Bath player off the back of a season where we haven't won anything.

"We know the pressure of the brand and the people that have gone before us and whose legend we have to live up to and hopefully that begins this year."

At this stage I'm not want they want and you can either sit at home and sulk about it or you can get on with it and be a better player

David Flatman on his England omission

The 30-year-old is part of an impressive-looking Bath pack which has been added to with the recruitment of Lewis Moody and Simon Taylor but is not getting carried away.

"We were undone upfront by Leicester last season [in the Premiership semi-final]. It wasn't the backs that lost us that game it was us really," said Flatman.

"Our scrum wasn't the best and we lost a few line-outs up there so there's always things to work on.

"We've got a some great players but so have 11 other teams so we've just got to deliver."

Flatman's form last season earned him a call-up for England's tour Down Under after several years in the international wilderness.

But despite starting two of the three non-Test matches against the Australian Barbarians and the New Zealand Maoris he has not been selected for any of the England squads for this season.

"I think often you know when you're not going to be included and I thought having had a decent tour I'd be involved," he added.

"I really enjoyed the summer and felt I justified the shirt I was wearing but that's not the point it's what the coaches think.

David Flatman
Flatman's has eight full England caps the last coming against Argentina in 2002

"At this stage I'm not want they want and you can either sit at home and sulk about it or you can get on with it and be a better player."

Bath begin their 2010/11 campaign with a trip to Leeds who have brought in the likes of England hooker Steve Thompson as well as two former teammates of Flatman in Daniel Browne and Michael Stephenson.

And the former Saracens man believes they will be a different proposition having stayed up after promotion the previous year.

"Last season I think they played appropriately with a chip on their shoulder and they were very hard to play against," said Flatman

"Everyone wrote them off when they started and they really used that.

"No-one's writing them off this year and they'll come in a confident bunch of blokes.

"We face a tough challenge when we visit Leeds this year, as does everyone else, but show me an easy game - there isn't one."

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see also
Lord MacLaurin to join Bath board
02 Sep 10 |  Bath
Banahan targets dual England role
02 Sep 10 |  Bath

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