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Will Carpenter

Will Carpenter writes

Posted Tuesday, March 30th 2021

Lam insists Bears are relishing Bordeaux encounter

Pat Lam says his side are under no illusions as to the size of the task facing them at Stade Chaban-Delmas on Sunday, as the Bears travel to France to take on Bordeaux-Begles in the Heineken Champions Cup Round of 16 (3pm KO, live on BT Sport 2 HD).

The Bears, who edged out Bordeaux in the semi-final of last season’s Challenge Cup, are targeting a first ever Champions Cup quarter final against the winner of Racing 92 and Edinburgh, but Lam knows the challenge that awaits them on Sunday is a significant one.

“This is it, it’s knockout, to progress to a possible home quarter-final at Ashton Gate, we need to get the job done,” he said.

“What Covid has done is focus you on your planning and preparation and we’ve been here before and we know we have to charter a plane out, we’re in a hotel and will have to stay in a tight bubble – get in, get the job done and get back.

'We know how dangerous they are'

“We know the challenge we face away – it’s always tough away in France, but certainly at Bordeaux. We know the type of team that they are and how dangerous they are – although we beat them in the Challenge Cup last season, we went to extra time for that, and they know what we bring as well. It’s Champions Cup football.”

The Director of Rugby also hailed the Bears’ impressive Six Nations window, which saw them take 37 points out of a possible 45 to strengthen their hold at top spot in the Gallagher Premiership, culminating in Saturday’s dramatic victory over Harlequins at Ashton Gate.

“I’m very pleased with what the boys have done. The Six Nations window was a goal for the guys to try and get as many points as possible, to get 32 points certainly before last weekend – and then to end up with the highest (points tally) of all the teams was really great credit to everybody and the work they put in.”


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