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.
Jonny May's superb late score capped a thrilling 40-32 European play-off win over Connacht on Sunday. The winger spoke afterwards of his team's character and spirit as he looked ahead to one more week of rugby.
Speaking to GRTV this afternoon, Director of Rugby David Humphreys hailed the 'never say die' attitude of the team, after despite not being at their best, fighting back to take a 40-32 win after extra time over Connacht.
Jonny May continues on the wing on Sunday as Connacht come to town, and the England wing explains to the local media this week that he is delighted with his form and is looking forward to taking on Pat Lam's men.
Speaking to the local media this week, front rower John Afoa is familiar with the challenge of Connacht from his time in Belfast, and the World Cup winner is fully aware of the challenge they pose ahead of Sunday's meeting in the Champions Cup play off
Speaking ahead of Gloucester's European Rugby Champions play-off against Connacht on Sunday (Kingsholm, 3:30pm), Director of Rugby David Humphreys admitted that he's glad to have more players available than in recent weeks ahead of a tough fixture.
Nick Wood captained the Cherry and Whites on Saturday afternoon, and the experienced front rower expressed his pride in the young squad in defeat to Bath on the final day of the Aviva Premiership season.
Lewis Ludlow scored Gloucester's opening try in the 30-50 defeat at Bath on Saturday, part of an impressive performance by the young back row forward. Speaking after the game, he paid tribute to the young Gloucester side who went toe to toe with the Aviva Premiership semi-finalists.
Speaking to the local media after the game, Director of Rugby David Humphreys gave an honest assessment of the game, and expressed his pride in the way his young charges had performed against the title-chasing hosts.
Speaking to the local media this week, Gloucester Rugby scrum half Callum Braley is excited by the challenge of the West Country Derby, and the ex-Bristol man reveals the squad will be giving their all.
At the recent London Irish game, personnel from the Imjin Barracks in Innsworth, including Gurkhas, were present, holding a collection to raise funds for ShelterBox to aid relief from the recent Nepal Earthquake Appeal.
It was a thriller at Kingsholm on Sunday afternoon, as Gloucester snatched victory from the jaws of defeat, leveling the scores in the final minute before triumphing in extra time over a spirited Connacht side.