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Match Preview – Bath Rugby v Gloucester Rugby

Match Preview – Bath Rugby v Gloucester Rugby
The Cherry and Whites will round off the pool stage of the Premiership Rugby Cup this weekend, with the 'Derby Day' Round on the road at Bath Rugby at The Recreation Ground on Saturday (KO 2.30pm)

Here are some players to keep an eye on this weekend.

Dom Coetzer

The South African playmaker starts at full back this weekend, and will get his first taste of West Country derby action. The Western Province product will be looking to bring his fast feet, and creativity into the game, up against a star studded opposition backline.

Jonathan Joseph

The England international continues his return from long term injury in the home midfield this weekend, linking up with experienced British and Irish Lion Jamie Roberts.

Last Time Out

Castres Olympique 24–22 Gloucester Rugby

Toulouse 20–17 Bath Rugby

Match Facts

What’s at stake?

Bottom of Pool 1 and with just pride left to play for, hosts Bath will want to stop Gloucester Rugby’s qualification hopes dead in their tracks.

West Country rivals Gloucester Rugby, by contrast, are still in with a realistic chance of taking the best runner-up spot.

To do so, the Cherry and Whites will, at the very least, need to secure better Worcester and Newcastle’s results – and most likely secure a bonus-point victory at the Rec.

Form so far?

After three defeats on the spin in the competition, Bath are still waiting for their first Premiership Rugby Cup win. Defeat at home to Harlequins on the opening weekend got their campaign off to a negative start, and they followed that up with away defeats at Exeter Chiefs and Newcastle.

Gloucester Rugby, meanwhile, got their own campaign underway in style with a thumping win over Wasps, before then succumbing to defeat at Bristol Bears.

With their hopes teetering, though, a dramatic late Gerbrandt Grobler try secured victory over pool leaders Northampton Saints and kept them in reckoning ahead of final round of action.

Last meeting

The omens are positive for a classic derby clash this weekend.

Last time around, the pair played out a scintillating 31-31 draw at the Rec, with former Bath utility back Matt Banahan thwarting his former club in the dying stages to earn a share of spoils.

A topsy-turvy game had seen Bath battled back from a 21-point deficit to lead with just seconds left to play, however a stunning Danny Cipriani pass set up Banahan for the match-saving score.

Hopes are high that Saturday’s encounter will be similarly enthralling.

Team News

Bath Rugby

15. Tom Homer, 14. Semesa Rokoduguni 13. Jonathan Joseph, 12. Jamie Roberts, 11. Ruaridh McConnochie, 10. Rhys Priestland, 9. Will Chudley; 1. Jacques van Rooyen, 2. Jack Walker, 3. Max Lahiff; 4. Dave Attwood, 5. Luke Charteris; 6. Elliott Stooke, 7. Josh Bayliss, 8. Paul Grant

Replacements

16. Tom Dunn, 17. Will Vaughan, 18. Henry Thomas; 19. Charlie Ewels, 20. Miles Reid, 21. Max Green, 22. Freddie Burns, 23. Jackson Willison

Gloucester Rugby

15. Dom Coetzer, 14. Matt Banahan, 13. Henry Trinder, 12. Tom Hudson, 11. Jake Morris, 10. Lloyd Evans, 9. Callum Braley; 1. Alex Seville, 2. Henry Walker, 3. Ciaran Knight; 4. Tom Savage, 5. Alex Craig; 6. Lewis Ludlow (capt), 7. Will Safe, 8. Gareth Evans

Replacements

16. Todd Gleave, 17. Paddy McAllister, 18. Gareth Denman; 19. Gerbrandt Grobler, 20. Cameron Terry; 21. Charlie Chapman, 22. Jack Reeves, 23. Alex Morgan

Match Officials

Referee: Matthew O’Grady

Assistant Referees: Neil Chivers & Dean Richards

How To Follow

This Saturday’s game is not live on Television, but there will be live commentary via BBC Radio Gloucestershire who will in place at The Rec.

Follow all of the club channels for live updates on the matchday live blog, Twitter and behind the scenes on Instagram.

Enjoy the game!
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