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Page last updated at 12:04 GMT, Thursday, 6 January 2011

Exeter's Gareth Steenson feeling fitter after injury

Gareth Steenson
Steenson was injured against London Irish in October last year

Exeter Chiefs fly-half Gareth Steenson believes he has come back from injury as a stronger player.

The 26-year-old, who was out for eight weeks with a knee injury, has made two substitute appearances since returning.

Steenson told BBC Devon: "It's been a long road back in, but I think that lay-off might have left me in better shape physically.

"I saw it as an opportunity to have an extra pre-season and the medical staff have been fantastic."

Steenson, who has come on towards the end of the Exeter's last two games, will be hoping to win a place back in the starting XV for this weekend's trip to Gloucester.

The Ulsterman said: "I'm feeling fit, fresh and starting to get back into the feel of it now, so I'm really pleased with how things have gone."

In the first meeting between the Chiefs and the Cherry and Whites last September, Steenson produced an exemplary kicking display, notching 17 points to help his side claim a 22-10 win.

He said: "This Saturday is an opportunity to see just how far we've come from when we played them [Gloucester] here.

"It's going to be a pressure cooker, which is something we've got to look to thrive on, and will hopefully will bring out the best in us.

"They're a really proud, traditional club and at Kingsholm they're going to have their support right behind them so I think it's a fantastic challenge for us."

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