Gloucester Rugby will kick off their 2009-10 Guinness Premiership season with a mouth watering home fixture against local rivals Bath Rugby.
It's always a fixture to whet the appetite and a cracking way to kick start the Guinness Premiership season at Kingsholm.
The two teams will, of course, have met in preseason at Kingsholm for the joint Andy Hazell/ Lee Mears Testimonial match but the opening weekend will see the action proper start with both sides fielding much revamped squads for the new season.
The fixtures at this stage, available at www.guinnesspremiership.com, are all subject to change with Sky yet to select their live matches for example.
Fly-half Billy Burns was named Man of the Match after the 35-14 European Rugby Challenge Cup victory over Stade Rochelais on Thursday evening, and was full of praise for all his team mates for the win after a short turnaround.
Gloucester have been in good form in recent weeks, but Backs Coach Tim Taylor knows that the Cherry and Whites will have to be at their best on Thursday evening (kick off 7:45pm) against a Stade Rochelais side flying high this season.
Speaking to GRTV after the bonus point win over Bristol, back row Lewis Ludlow revealed that despite a tricky first half, Gloucester backed their skills to come through, a faith that was evident in a strong second half showing.
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.
Gloucester's much changed side had to overcome conceding an early try on Thursday evening, but responded in style to down Stade Rochelais by 35 points to 14 in the European Rugby Challenge Cup and set up a mouthwatering return fixture next weekend.
After taking 11 points from their last three games in the Aviva Premiership, including bonus point wins against Wasps and Bristol, Gloucester will be looking to continue their good form when they welcome La Rochelle to Kingsholm.