It has been a busy weekend of summer tour action with a couple of the present and future Gloucester Rugby squad in action across the globe.
New recruit Greig Laidlaw captained Scotland as they kicked off their North American tour with a hard-fought victory over USA in the heat in Houston.
Tries from Tim Visser, Stuart Hogg and a penalty try gave the tourists the victory in new Head Coach, Vern Cotter's opening game against the ever-competitive Eagles at the BBVA Compass Stadium.
Laidlaw was flawless from the tee, converting all three tries in the 24-6 victory and adding a penalty as the Scots began their tour, ahead of a tough test against Canada next week.
USA, with the Aviva Premiership based quartet of Chris Wyles and Hayden Smith (Saracens), Blaine Scully (Leicester Tigers) and Cam Dolan (Northampton Saints) in their starting line up made the tourists work for their win in the searing Texas heat but a strong Scottish squad will take plenty of confidence from their showing.
On Saturday, in Apia, Samoa, the Pacific Nations Cup kicked off and Sila Puafisi started for Tonga as they faced Samoa.
It was a dramatic afternoon, with Samoa naming a hugely powerful side packed with plenty of talent that ply their trade in Europe, but the visiting Tongans shocked the hosts to earn a draw at eighteen points apiece.
Tonga took the lead midway through the first half as neat hands through the back line allowed winger Otulea Katoa to sprint away out wide, a score which Latiume Fosita improved.
Samoa then hit back and in stunning style as winger Fautua Otto showed great pace to burst through the Tongan defence and outstrip the cover.
Tonga's determination throughout the game was rewarded before half time, Worcester Warriors scrum half Jeremy Sua'a dallied on the ball and his box kick was charged down by Josh Afu. The second row gathered to dive over and give the Tongan's a 7 point lead at the turnaround.
Tonga were in control of territory and the turnover count, this forced Samoa to bring on Northampton Saints' scrum half Kahn Fotuali'i and the half back gave them a controlling head in the humid conditions.
Samoan fly half Tusi Pisi then chipped over a penalty to reduce the deficit and then shortly after the hosts grabbed the lead and through a familiar face.
Good tempo and phase play allowed the ball to find the hands of captain David Lemi and the winger scuttled home with ease much to the delight of the Apia crowd and put the hosts into the lead.
Census Johnston was shown a yellow card by referee Wayne Barnes, after Exeter Chiefs wing Fetu'u Vainikolo burst through and Fosita leveled the scores at 15-15.
It was then the battle of the boot, with both Pisi and Fosita adding late penalties amongst the indiscipline to leave the final score at 18-18.
Willi Heinz scored Gloucester's second try as the Cherry and Whites overturned a disappointing first 40 minutes and 0-6 half time deficit, to earn a 26-18 Aviva Premiership victory over Bristol Rugby on Saturday.
It's the first Gloucester-Bristol derby at Kingsholm in over eight years this Saturday (kick off 4:30pm) and, previewing the game with the local media this week, Defence Coach Jonny Bell stressed that, with both teams in the bottom half of the table, they both need the points.
Speaking to the local media this week, Gloucester front rower John Afoa knows the challenge ahead this week against Bristol, and calls on the Cherry and Whites to make the most of home advantage as a determined squad look to bounce back from a narrow loss to Saracens.
Tom Savage speaks to GRTV and the local media as Gloucester went down by 24-20 at Saracens on Sunday afternoon. The second row was disappointed with the result, despite a strong showing from the hosts.
Speaking immediately after the game, skipper Willi Heinz thought that Gloucester had executed their game plan reasonably well and competed hard against Saracens. However, it wasn't enough but the squad will have plenty to work on this week ahead of the derby match against Bristol.
Gloucester may be coming off their best win of the season, the 38-16 victory over Wasps last weekend, but Director of Rugby David Humphreys admits that Sunday's trip to Saracens is an even tougher test.
Gloucester centre Billy Twelvetrees praised his side's character after their comeback win against Bristol on Saturday. The Cherry and Whites overcame a 6-0 half time deficit to eventually win the game 26-18 and secure a bonus point victory.
Looking to try a new sport? Look no further than Walking Rugby as thanks to Gloucester Rugby you can come along and try out the fast-growing sport at taster sessions across the county, starting this Wednesday.
Gloucester return to European Rugby Challenge Cup action on Thursday evening with the visit of Stade Rochelais to Kingsholm (kick off 7:45pm). Early Bird ticket prices are available until 6:30pm on matchday.