Bristol go for continuity for Goucester’s visit

Bristol Rugby look to build upon last weekend’s 20-20 draw at Worcester by making minimal changes to the starting line up that performed so well that day.


New signing Nathan Brew features in the matchday squad for the first time.

Head Coach Richard Hill names an unchanged backline as he keeps faith with those who performed so well at Sixways with Brew’s inclusion on the bench the only change from last weekend.

Up front, there are only changes in the front row where Mark Regan and Alex Clarke, who both left the field last weekend with knocks, are replaced in the starting line up by Scott Linklater and Darren Crompton respectively.

Hill felt that the result at Sixways was an important one for various reasons.

“I think we were happier than Worcester were with the result last weekend. They would have been looking for two wins against ourselves and Newcastle.”

“But I think we just shaded the physical contact area and won most of the collisions which showed a good attitude. And we started really well and, although we made a few technical errors early on, you could see we were up for it.”

“We kept them out and finished well. We had the confidence to take a quick lineout and Ed Barnes kept his nerve. We reacted really well and, although there was initial disappointment in the dressing room, spirits were high on the bus on the way back.”

Hill also admitted that defence will be key on Saturday when the Cherry and Whites come to town.

“It’s often tight between ourselves and Gloucester at the Mem and we’ll have to have a careful look at how London Irish beat them.”

“Our defence has let us down against them in the past and, if you look at recent games between the two teams, their points have often come from our mistakes. We’ve made them look good and they take their chances.”

“Hopefully, we’re starting to get a bit meaner now in terms of conceding tries and we need to build on our defensive display against Worcester which was much better but not perfect. We’ll have to take it up a couple of notches against Gloucester.”

Bristol Rugby:

Luke Arscott; Lee Robinson, Neil Brew, Luke Eves, David Lemi; Ed Barnes, Shaun Perry (capt); Darren Crompton, Scott Linklater, Jason Hobson; Mariano Sambucetti, Robert Sidoli; Nathan Budgett, Alfie To’oala, Dan Ward-Smith


Mark Regan, Mark Irish, Dave Attwood, James Phillips, Graeme Beveridge, Adrian Jarvis, Nathan Brew.

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