WHEN your second game with a new team is a victory over opponents who have been European champions three times, you kind of know you have come to the right place.

And that is certainly the impression that new Edinburgh assistant coach Gareth Baber got when he saw the capital club beat Saracens in the Challenge Cup last month.

The 49-year-old Welshman - formerly head coach of the Fijian Sevens team that won Olympic gold last year - has also seen Edinburgh beat Benetton in the URC since taking up his new post as skills and assistant attack coach. Impressed as he was by the performances in those two games, he has also been favourably struck by the organisation and attitude behind the scenes under head coach Mike Blair.

“Mike and the coaching staff have done a great job to date,” he said yesterday. “I think a lot of good work has been done prior to my getting here. The team are pretty settled in the way they want to play the game and they’ve shown great humility in the way they want to improve all the time.

“We put in a good performance against Saracens down in London, and we did something similar the week previous here against Benetton. I’ll probably need about three or four more games to really understand where that sits. But what I can say is that we’re in a good space at the moment and we’ve done some good stuff over the Christmas period.”

Having had the 1872 Cup festive double-header postponed, Edinburgh will play their first match since that Saracens game on Saturday, when Cardiff visit the DAM Health Stadium on league duty. They are second in the table at present, just a point behind Leinster, and although Baber is conscious that his new team have yet to play the toughest opponents in the URC such as the league leaders and Munster, he believes that their current position will give them confidence to take into those crunch games.

“We’ve just missed two games against our local rivals, and we know that some games are coming up in the near future where we’ll need to be as effective as possible to make sure that we stay in that position,” he added.

“But yeah, you’re encouraged by the fact that you’re doing stuff right to get in the top three in the table.”