Scotland stand-off Duncan Weir insists the challenge of having to hold off Stuart Hogg for the No 10 shirt spurs him on.
Weir keeps his starting role for Saturday's Six Nations clash with Italy in Rome in the knowledge another defeat could see the Scots end up taking home the wooden spoon and put even more pressure on his place.
Full-back Hogg said after the recent Calcutta Cup defeat by England that he would relish a move across to the play-making role.
But coach Scott Johnson has kept faith with Weir, despite him struggling in their first two matches, and he says having to look over his shoulder does not make life any tougher.
"There is always going to be competition," Weir said. "It doesn't matter if there is no replacement stand-off on the bench, I know I'll have a fight on my hands. Greig Laidlaw has played there for Scotland before and Hoggy did it for the Lions during the summer.
"But that is how it should be. You should have that pressure on your shoulders to perform.
"It doesn't matter that I'm only 22. You shouldn't get an easy ride in a Scotland jersey. Personally, I take great pride in wearing it and it should be hard to earn that right."
Weir also feels the heavy criticism Scotland came in for after the England defeat in the press and on social media is no help to the players.
He added: "I don't tend to read the papers, but some of my friends and family have posted things on Twitter and Facebook so I know there's been some flak flying about.
"The England game was difficult enough to take without beating myself up further. I don't want to put even more pressure on myself by reading all the articles.
"I know as an individual that it wasn't good enough and we know that collectively as a team. But we know we can fix it and the solution is in that dressing room.
"The (former players) are all entitled to their opinions, but it is not easy when you are hearing about these type of comments. But our focus has been on going on to Italy and proving our critics wrong."