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Will Carpenter

Will Carpenter writes

Posted Tuesday, September 24th 2019

Press bitesize: Gloucester (h) - Premiership Cup

Head coach Pat Lam and outside back Luke Daniels faced the media ahead of Friday's Premiership Cup clash against Gloucester at Ashton Gate - here's the key points from the session.


Raising the bar

Luke Daniels says he is eager to raise the bar in his second season at Bristol Bears and is targeting ‘an extra 10%’ in his performances after a solid debut season in the West Country.

The 27-year-old, who arrived at Ashton Gate from Ealing Trailfinders in 2018 following a sparkling campaign in the GKIPA Championship, says he feels settled in the club environment and keen to take his game to the next level under Director of Rugby, Pat Lam.

“Pre-season has been really good – it’s been a bit different this year, a different structure and everyone has really enjoyed it. I feel like we’ve really developed over the summer.

“Last year I was new, so maybe I was given a bit of leeway when I got something wrong, but this year I’m expected to progress every week.

“We always talk about finding that extra 10% and that’s what I’m aiming to do this season."


Hughes set for debut

Lam has made 15 changes from the side that played at The Stoop, including a competitive debut for Nathan Hughes and a long-awaited return for Will Hurrell, who missed the final three months of last season with a shoulder injury.

“He (Nathan Hughes) is excited, he’s trained well, he’s in great nick and he’s put a lot of work in, but the key for him is to get his basic work done and work well in the team. It’s great to see the excitement from a player who has already achieved so much.

“All of the top players have such high standards, that’s why they’ve been able to achieve so much in the game. Himself and the other guys are all looking forward to playing.


Great expectations

Pat Lam has called on his side to build on the positives from their first outing of the season, when Gloucester arrive at Ashton Gate for the second round of pool fixtures in the Premiership Cup.

“We’re trying to get the balance right to give everyone a game. The guys coming back now, there’s a lot of experience there, but it’s about cohesion as a team and so far, they’ve worked hard, and you can see the experience coming through.

“Now, it’s for them to go and put that into play on Friday and continue our build-up to the first round against Bath.

“The expectations are always high for anyone who puts on the Bristol jersey, but the boys know they have their own standards, they’ve been there, done that, so of course we expect a bigger improvement this week.”


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