Hooker Dewi Lake knows exactly the challenge that awaits Ospreys when they head to Montpellier Hérault Rugby on Saturday for Round 2 in the Heineken Champions Cup.

Ospreys fell to a 23-17 defeat at home during their Round 1 match at home to Leicester Tigers, but Lake can’t wait for another tough test against the French TOP14 side.

“The first thing you think about French teams is a big pack: big scrum, big lineout, big driving maul,” he said, “they can rip you apart. There’s no room to sit off playing French teams.

“A lot of the time playing English or Welsh teams you might make a couple of dominant tackles then you know a box kick is coming – whereas you play French teams and you’d be lucky to make a dominant tackle in the first place.

“But if you do, they still might play, and they still might try a chip over the top, or a little kick in behind and then their pacy boys are going to get on it.

“It’s staying alive to things that you’re probably not expecting at all.”

Nonetheless, the 23-year-old looking forward to the Pool B match and the challenge of playing in front of a French crowd – and he expects it to be a great spectacle for the neutral too.

“I think it’s going to be unbelievable,” Lake said of the Montpellier atmosphere, “The atmosphere in French rugby as a whole, the way the crowd gets behind games, [means] it’s an unbelievable place to play.

“I think it’s dominating rugby thoroughly at the minute, you look at the French international team. But also, the support that the French league is getting is unrivalled at the minute.

“It’s the kind of game we like to play, as forwards. Hopefully it’s going to be pack on pack. That’s something that we pride ourselves on at the Ospreys: having a good pack, dominant scrums, dominant lineouts.

“I think we can match up well and it’ll be a good watch.”