Banner image


Will Carpenter


Posted Thursday, September 19th 2019

Preview: Harlequins (a) - Premiership Cup

Bristol Bears kick off the 2019/20 season with a trip to the Twickenham Stoop to take on Harlequins in the opening round of the Premiership Rugby Cup on Friday.

Pat Lam's side have enjoyed an impressive pre-season, but attention now turns to the real stuff as Bristol prepare to take on Paul Gustard's Quins live on BT Sport. 

Here's everything you need to know about Friday's clash.

Match details:

  • Date: Friday, September 20th
  • Kick-off: 7:45pm
  • Competition: Premiership Rugby Cup
  • Where: Twickenham Stoop
  • Officials: Ian Tempest, Assistant referees: Paul Dix and Simon McConnell, TMO: Sean Davey
  • Media coverage: BT Sport (7.30pm), BBC Radio Bristol
  • Buying tickets: If you're planning on travelling to The Stoop to back the Bears, click here to buy tickets. 
Twickenham Stoop (JMPUK).

Team news

Toby Fricker will make his competitive debut for the club when Bristol Bears kick off the new season with a Premiership Cup clash versus Harlequins on Friday (7.45pm KO).

The winger – who arrived from Ebbw Vale in March – makes his first outing as Director of Rugby Pat Lam reveals his squad for the Twickenham Stoop encounter.

Sam Bedlow and Tiff Eden form the midfield partnership, while Max Lahiff starts in the front row to make his competitive debut.

Jake Heenan captains the side from openside, alongside Academy back rower James Dun, who makes his first competitive outing since November 2018.

Bristol Bears: 15. Mat Protheroe; 14. Tom Pincus, 13. Sam Bedlow, 12. Tiff Eden, 11. Toby Fricker; 10. Ian Madigan, 9. Harry Randall; 1. Yann Thomas, 2. Shaun Malton, 3. Max Lahiff, 4. Aly Muldowney, 5. Ed Holmes, 6. James Dun, 7. Jake Heenan (c), 8. Joe Batley.

Replacements: 16. Will Capon, 17. Ollie Dawe, 18. Nicky Thomas, 19. John Hawkins, 20. George Kloska, 21. Nic Stirzaker, 22. Harry Ascherl, 23. Jack Bates.

Harlequins: 15. Aaron Morris, 14. Ross Chisholm, 13. Joe Marchant, 12. Ben Tapuai, 11. Gabriel Ibitoye, 10. Brett Herron, 9. Niall Saunders; 1. Nick Auterac, 2. Max Crumpton, 3. Phil Swainston, 4. Glen Young, 5. Dino Lamb, 6. Tom Lawday, 7. Will Evans, 8. James Chisholm.

Replacements: 16. Jack Musk, 17. Santiago Garcia Botta, 18. Simon Kerrod, 19. Toby Freeman, 20. Jack Clifford, 21. Charlie Mulchrone, 22. Francis Saili, 23. Louis Lynagh.

Last time out

Saturday, February 23rd | Harlequins 36-26 Bristol Bears | Gallagher Premiership

Alapati Leiua’s 79th-minute try earned Bristol Bears a consolation bonus-point on the road, but it was Harlequins who took the spoils 36-26 at The Stoop.

The Samoan powered over for his second of the afternoon, after Protheroe had scooped up Madigan’s kick through, to seal a fifth try bonus-point of the season for Pat Lam’s men, who were left to rue a 10-minute Quins blitz before half-time.

Read the full report here.

Word from the camp

Pat Lam has urged his players to take their opportunity when Bristol Bears face Harlequins in the opening round of the Premiership Cup on Friday (7.45pm KO).

The Director of Rugby spoke to gathered media ahead of the opening Premiership Cup fixture of the 2019/20 campaign.

Subscribe to Bristol Bears TV by clicking here.

Form guide

Harlequins will be eager to improve on their Cup showing last season, which saw them finish bottom of the Pool One standings after winning just one of their four matches.

And Bristol will be similarly determined to enhance their performance levels, missing out on a semi-final spot to eventual winners Northampton Saints in Pool Three by five points.

Bristol Bears: WDW
Harlequins: LWL

Tom Pincus (JMPUK).

Statto's corner

  • Max Lahiff, Toby Fricker, Harry Ascherl and Jack Bates will make their competitive debuts for the club.
  • The matchday squad averages just 12 competitive appearances for the club. Ian Madigan has the most with 43 and is the only international in the squad.
Harry Ascherl (JMPUK).