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Will Carpenter

Will Carpenter writes

Posted Friday, March 6th 2020

Preview: Harlequins (h) - Gallagher Premiership

Bristol Bears are targeting a fifth successive win in the Gallagher Premiership when Harlequins are the visitors to Ashton Gate on Sunday (1pm KO).

Tries from Chris Vui, Alapati Leiua and Harry Randall sealed a memorable derby victory over Bath at The Recreation Ground - Bristol's first there since 2006.

Paul Gustard's Harlequins head into the game off the back of a dramatic win against league leaders, Exeter Chiefs, and will be looking to complete the double over Bristol, having beaten them at The Stoop in round two. 

Here everything you need to know ahead of Sunday's Gallagher Premiership clash with Harlequins at Ashton Gate (1pm KO).


Match details:

  • Date: Sunday, March 8th
  • Kick-off: 1pm
  • Competition: Gallagher Premiership
  • Where: Ashton Gate
  • Referee: Craig Maxwell-Keys (73rd Premiership game). Assistant Referees: Andrew Jackson & Peter Allan. TMO: Stuart Terheege. Citing Officer: David Guyan.
  • Media coverage: BT Sport, BBC Radio Bristol, Channel 5 Highlights 
  • Tickets: Click here to purchase tickets for the match.

Team news

Pat Lam makes six changes to his team, as Henry Purdy returns to the backline in place of Piers O’Conor (ankle).

Harry Randall also comes into the starting line-up, while Will Capon and John Afoa are named in the front row.

In the back row, Bristol welcome back Dan Thomas and Nathan Hughes for the round 13 clash.

Bryan Byrne is listed among the replacements and could make his competitive debut for the club from the bench.


Bristol Bears team to face Harlequins at Ashton Gate on Sunday, March 8th (1pm KO):

15. Charles Piutau; 14. Luke Morahan, 13. Alapati Leiua, 12. Sam Bedlow, 11. Henry Purdy; 10. Callum Sheedy, 9. Harry Randall; 1. Yann Thomas, 2. Will Capon, 3. John Afoa, 4. Joe Joyce, 5. Chris Vui, 6. Steven Luatua (c), 7. Dan Thomas, 8. Nathan Hughes.

Replacements: 16. Bryan Byrne, 17. Jake Woolmore, 18. Max Lahiff, 19. Ed Holmes, 20. Jake Heenan, 21. Andy Uren, 22. Ian Madigan, 23. Ioan Lloyd.

Unavailable: Harry Thacker (neck), Jordan Lay (knee), James Lay (leg), Nicky Thomas (calf), Aly Muldowney (head), Dave Attwood (shoulder), Sam Graham (shoulder), Siale Piutau (knee), Luke Daniels (shoulder), Will Hurrell (head), Charlie Powell (ankle), Piers O’Conor (ankle).

Harlequins:

15. Aaron Morris, 14. Luke Northmore, 13. Tom Penny, 12. Paul Lasike, 11. Gabriel Ibitoye, 10. Brett Herron, 9. Danny Care; 1. Mark Lambert, 2. Scott Baldwin, 3. Simon Kerrod, 4. Glen Young, 5. Matt Symons, 6. James Chisholm, 7. Chris Robshaw (c), 8. Alex Dombrandt.

Replacements: 16. Jack Musk, 17. Nick Auterac, 18. Will Collier, 19. Tevita Cavubati, 20. Will Evans, 21. Niall Saunders, 22. Marcus Smith, 23. Francis Saili.


Last time out

Saturday, October 26th | Harlequins 22-17 Bristol Bears | Gallagher Premiership

Bristol Bears fought back to earn a losing bonus-point in a rain-soaked Gallagher Premiership clash with Harlequins at The Stoop in round two.

Jake Heenan applied the finishing touches to a free-flowing attack nine minutes from time, to set up a gripping finale in West London - and Pat Lam’s men almost snatched victory in the dying seconds as Quins repelled two late lineout drives.

But Bristol’s 18-year wait for a win at The Stoop goes on, with Joe Marchant’s 67th-minute try and 17 points from the boot of Marcus Smith cancelling out Heenan’s effort and four Callum Sheedy penalties to edge Quins over the line.

Read the full report here. 


Word from the camp

John Afoa insists Bristol are intent on maintaining their winning form in the Gallagher Premiership when Harlequins visit Ashton Gate (1pm KO).

The prop looked ahead to the round thirteen clash as Bristol Bears go in search of a fifth successive victory in the competition.

Subscribe to Bristol Bears TV by clicking here.

 


Form guide

Bristol Bears have won their last four Gallagher Premiership Rugby matches and another victory would set a new Bears record in the competition.

Bristol have lost just once at Ashton Gate in any tournament since the end of March last year: 21-26 to Wasps in round seven of Premiership Rugby.

Harlequins have won just twice in the last six rounds of Gallagher Premiership Rugby, both at home, to Saracens in round nine and Exeter last weekend. The Londoner’s only away win in Premiership Rugby in the last twelve months was 28-22 at Wasps on December 21st.

Harlequins have lost just once in their last ten Gallagher Premiership Rugby encounters with Bristol: 13-20 at Ashton Gate in September 2018.

Bristol Bears: WWW
Harlequins: WLW 


Head-to-head

Harry Randall vs Danny Care

It's aa live wire battle at scrum half, as Harry Randall takes on the experienced Danny Care at Ashton Gate. The pacy pair will be looking to inject some life into their respective sides on Sunday.

Callum Sheedy vs Brett Herron

Two rising stars in the number ten shirt face off on Sunday, as Callum Sheedy goes head to head with Brett Herron. Both players have represented Jersey Reds during their rise to Premiership stardom.


Statto's corner

  • A fifth successive win would set a new Premiership record for Bristol Bears
  • Harlequins have lost just once in their last ten Gallagher Premiership encounters with Bristol

Matchday sponsor: Hartley Pensions


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