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George Skivington looks forward to "tough test" against Perpignan

Gloucester Rugby host Perpignan in the Challenge Cup on Saturday and ahead of the game head coach George Skivington previewed the fixture and gave an update on what’s been happening at Kingsholm.

On Saracens win last time out

“We’re really pleased with the win at Saracens. We had a tough game against Quins and we were a little bit disappointed with that. I thought Quins were better than us on the day and we were a little bit disappointed with the way that we managed that second half and we didn’t quite take our opportunities in the first half.

“There were a lot of good discussions on that Monday and I was really pleased with the way that everyone came in disappointed but addressed the issues. We talked about how we were going to manage our way through the game and at Saracens we had to stay on task with our game plan because they are very good at what they do.

“The best piece of the Saracens game for me personally was that growth in the way we managed the game and stuck to the plan, and it delivered. It’s credit to the boys as it was quick learning from Quins that taught us that and we moved on fast.”

On Six Nations call ups

“The boys have done well. I thought we might have had a couple more called up and maybe we will by the end of the tournament. I think we’ve got a good few guys now, not just the ones who were picked, but guys who are knocking on the door and they’ve earned the right to have their names in the mix.

“I’m hoping that those numbers will grow as the season goes on.”

On rest week

“The squad have had a week off as well which is massively beneficial. We’ve had a chance to review our game and see where we’re at and how we want to push on. With the internationals going away, it gives us an opportunity to let some other guys take the reigns and fill the spots. Not only on game day but in training as well.

“It will be an exciting period for us.”

On Albert Tuisue joining next season

“Albert is massively exciting. He’s a huge man and is extremely powerful. Most importantly I know him as a bloke and he’s a really honest, unassuming but hard-working tough man. That’s always the benefit of bringing in people that you have worked with previously. We’re very diligent with the work we do on the people we bring in with a lot of phone calls and a lot of homework but I know what he’s about as a bloke and he’ll give us a slightly different dimension on the field.

“It’s massively exciting for Gloucester Ruby.”

On this week’s contract renewals

“We’re really lucky. Everyone wants to stay. We’ve managed to retain everybody so far which is brilliant news. Obviously other teams are looking at our players, that’s the way it goes when you start to get some results, but the boys are fully invested.

“Santi (Socino) has been brilliant ever since he’s come over and he’s really invested and I think he suits the way that we play. Chappers (Chapman) has a great story, from being a little kid in the Shed and coming through and scoring that try against Bristol in the corner and celebrating in front of his friends and family. It’s really exciting and we’ve said it before but the more home grown players we can have the better.

“Credit to Charlie as well, he’s worked really hard on his game the last year and he’s in a really good spot thanks to his own hard work.”

On Perpignan

“They will be a tough test. They might not have had the results go their way but they are a very big physical team and they’ve got some dangerous threats in terms of runners out wide. We’ve watched them inside out and we’ll have to be on our toes. There are a slightly different questions in Europe compared to the Premiership because you don’t know people as well as you do when you play them each season.

“I look forward to the challenges that they will present and seeing how the boys deal with it.”

Tickets for our Challenge Cup game against Perpignan are available here.

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Sat 4 Jun
KO 15:00
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