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.
Speaking to GRTV after the game, Backs Coach Tim Taylor was happy with the squad as they cruised to victory over Treviso. The result wasn't in doubt, but the Cherry and Whites laboured to secure a crucial try bonus point.
Speaking to the local media this week, Gloucester Rugby centre Matt Scott is excited to take the field again as the Cherry and Whites look to build on the win in Bayonne when Treviso come to Kingsholm this Saturday.
Defence Coach Jonny Bell admitted this week that the European Rugby Challenge Cup victory in Bayonne was a welcome one, stressed that Benetton Treviso will pose a tough test on Saturday at Kingsholm but that Gloucester are determined to deliver in front of their own fans.
Motu Matu'u is looking to make up for lost time this week as the Cherry and Whites head to Basque Country to take on Bayonne in the European Rugby Challenge Cup opener. The Samoan hooker made his first appearance in the jersey last weekend, and is hoping to contribute to the team this weekend.
Gloucester's attentions turn to Europe this weekend as they travel to Bayonne for their opening fixture of this season's European Rugby Challenge Cup. Forwards Coach Trevor Woodman told GRTV that the Cherry and Whites will be aiming to top their pool as they've done for the past two seasons, but is well aware of how tough it is to win in France.
Although understandably disappointed at seeing victory slip away at the last minute, Ben Morgan said after the game at Exeter that there were plenty of positives that Gloucester could take from the game.
Speaking after a last-gasp try from Exeter earned the Chiefs a 27-27 draw at Sandy Park on Saturday, Charlie Sharples admitted to mixed feelings. The game saw him score a try on his 200th competitive appearance for the club, but the frustration from not closing out the win was clear.
Gloucester made it two wins from two outings in this season's European Rugby Challenge Cup as they outplayed Benetton Treviso at Kingsholm to win by 37 points to 8, the bonus point try coming with the final play of the game.