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Will Carpenter

Will Carpenter writes

Posted Wednesday, September 11th 2019

Gallagher Premiership launch: in brief

With the new season fast approaching, players and coaches from the 12 Gallagher Premiership clubs gathered at Twickenham for the annual competition launch on Wednesday (September 11).

Director of Rugby, Pat Lam and international stars John Afoa and Nathan Hughes were at HQ to represent Bristol, facing the media and the cameras as the countdown began to the opening day of the new season.

Bristol Bears kick off the new season with a trip to The Stoop to face Paul Gustard's Harlequins in the Premiership Rugby Cup next Friday (September 20th), before the main event gets under way on Friday, October 18th, with local rivals Bath the visitors to a jam-packed Ashton Gate in the league's curtain-raiser. 

Here's a quick-fire look at how the Gallagher Premiership 2019/20 launch went down.


Picture perfect

Players from each of the 12 Gallagher Premiership sides were all smiles as they posed alongside the trophy at Twickenham.

What they said:

Pat Lam

“The Premiership has grown to become the number one competition in the world.

"People are coming over here from all over the world and people are wanting to come here because they understand the quality of the competition.

“It’s exciting. We’ve added a couple of new faces but so many of the boys here now have been here from when I first started."


Nathan Hughes

"Last season's Gallagher Premiership was very competitive - and this season looks like being no different.

"You've got 12 very good times battling it out, and if you're not on your game every week, you're going to get caught out.

"We've put the work in throughout pre-season and we head into the new season confident and ambitious.

"Bristol showed last season that they weren't there to make up the numbers, and this season, we want to see how far this team can go.

"Top six and Champions Cup rugby is the target and that's what we have set our sights on again."


John Afoa

"It's been a long pre-season and the lads have been working really hard to prepare for the new season.

"Our new Head of S&C, Kevin Geary, has been working us really hard, which has been good, and boys are feeling good.

"Obviously, days like today show us that the first games are fast approaching and we're really looking forward to getting started at Bristol Bears."


Best of social media:

Nathan Hughes showcased his levitation and offloading skills in front of the green screen at the Gallagher Premiership launch, with the resulting images finding their way on to the number eight's Instagram page.


Pat Lam, was one of the event's star attractions, with fans and media alike keen to speak to the Director of Rugby.


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