Gloucester Rugby can today confirm that they will no longer be playing Plymouth Albion in a preseason friendly on Saturday August 16th, but will now compete in the World Club 7s on the same weekend.
The intention had been to play a double header against the Greene King IPA Championship duo of Plymouth Albion and Leeds Carnegie.
However, Gloucester are now set to participate in the World Club 7s, which takes place at Twickenham on 16 & 17 August, due to winning the JP Morgan 7s last summer.
Certain players will also be unavailable for selection as it is an EPS rest week, which means that the club feels it would not be able to field teams and compete on three fronts in a meaningful manner.
CEO Stephen Vaughan confirmed the change today.
"We want all our fixtures to be as competitive as possible. With a number of our resources now set to be on duty at Twickenham that day in the World Club Sevens, and a number of our international players also unavailable, we felt that we couldn't play two full matches in one day as well as the Sevens tournament.
"We're very disappointed as Plymouth were a welcome preseason guest to Kingsholm last season. I'd like to thank them for their understanding, they're naturally disappointed but have been terrific about the matter.
"We appreciate our supporters were looking forward to seeing as many of the squad as possible in action on the one day but, with the Leeds and Munster friendly fixtures, plus the Premiership Rugby 7s all taking place at Kingsholm, there is a feast of rugby set to come this summer."
Gloucester's preseason fixture schedule will now be as follows:
Saturday August 16th, Leeds Carnegie, Kingsholm, 3pm
Saturday August 23rd, Munster Rugby, Kingsholm, 3pm
Saturday August 30th, Scarlets, Parc y Scarlets, 3pm
Tickets are still available for the Premiership Rugby 7s and are priced at just £10 for adults, £5 for concessions and £1 for juniors. Club Members are reminded that this event is included in their membership.
Previewing Friday evening's local derby at Bristol, Interim Head Coach Jonny Bell told the local media that Gloucester's preparations have gone well and that the whole squad is united in trying to finish the season on a high.
Speaking to GRTV this week, Acting Head Coach Jonny Bell spoke of his pleasure in the efforts and intensity in training from the squad after a tricky few weeks. The team were preparing for big games with Bristol and Cardiff in coming weeks.
Willi Heinz was understandably and visibly disappointed when he spoke to GRTV after the 27-30 home defeat to Harlequins, apologising to the home support as the game slipped away after seemingly having the game under control.
Speaking to the local media this week, Scottish centre Matt Scott spoke of the squad's determination to put in a big home performance against Harlequins, with vital points up for grabs in the hunt for a Top Six spot this Saturday (KO 3pm)
Looking ahead to Saturday's Aviva Premiership fixture at home to Harlequins (kick off 3pm), Head Coach Laurie Fisher told the local media that Gloucester will need to be on top of their game in a match which has big implications in terms of top six ambitions.
A big few days for the Gloucester-Hartpury Women side. First came the news that the team will compete in Women's Super Rugby next season, and on Saturday the team will play Worcester Ladies IIs at Kingsholm. Centre Hannah Jones and wing Michelle Ruddock spoke to GRTV this week to reflect on events.
Speaking to the local media after the 35-22 loss at Wasps, lock Tom Savage spoke of his disappointment at the result, with Gloucester left to rue a number of missed opportunities against a clinical home side.
Missing so many starters, and up against a team fighting for their Premiership existence, Gloucester did what had to be done at Ashton Gate on Friday evening battling their way to a 32-14 Aviva Premiership win over Bristol Rugby.