Banner image


Will Carpenter


Posted Friday, February 21st 2020

Preview: Worcester Warriors (h) - Gallagher Premiership

Bristol Bears welcome Worcester Warriors to Ashton Gate on Sunday in round 11 of the Gallagher Premiership (1pm KO).

Pat Lam's men made it back-to-back league wins with a remarkable comeback against Northampton Saints at Franklin's Gardens, as tries from Henry Purdy and Lewis Thiede saw them overturn a 14-point deficit with 20 unanswered second half points.

Worcester were edged out by Bath at Sixways but claimed a losing bonus point thanks to tries from Cornell du Preez and Nick David.

Everything you need to know ahead of Sunday's Gallagher Premiership clash with Worcester Warriors at Ashton Gate.

Match details:

  • Date: Sunday, February 23rd
  • Kick-off: 1pm
  • Competition: Gallagher Premiership
  • Where: Ashton Gate
  • Referee: JP Doyle (179th Premiership game). Assistant Referees: Simon Harding & Peter Allan. TMO: Stuart Terheege. Citing Officer: Paul Hull.
  • Media coverage: BBC Radio Bristol, Channel 5 Highlights 
  • Tickets: Click here to purchase tickets for the match.

Team news

Director of Rugby Pat Lam makes five changes from the side that beat Northampton in round ten, as Henry Purdy and Lewis Thiede – the two try-scorers at Franklin’s Gardens – are selected to start.

Homegrown hooker Will Capon will make his first Premiership start in the front row, while Jake Heenan comes into the back row.

Skipper Steven Luatua (neck) misses out through injury, so Joe Joyce comes into the second row, with Chris Vui moving to blindside flanker.

Bristol Bears team to face Worcester Warriors at Ashton Gate on Sunday, February 23rd (1pm KO):

15. Charles Piutau; 14. Luke Morahan, 13. Piers O’Conor, 12. Sam Bedlow, 11. Henry Purdy; 10. Callum Sheedy (cc), 9. Harry Randall; 1. Jake Woolmore, 2. Will Capon, 3. Lewis Thiede, 4. Dave Attwood, 5. Joe Joyce, 6. Chris Vui (cc), 7. Jake Heenan, 8. Nathan Hughes.

Replacements: 16. Shaun Malton, 17. Yann Thomas, 18. John Afoa, 19. Luke Hamilton, 20. Dan Thomas, 21. Andy Uren, 22. Ioan Lloyd, 23. Alapati Leiua.

Worcester Warriors:

15. Jamie Shillcock, 14. Perry Humphreys, 13. Ollie Lawrence, 12. Ashley Beck, 11. Nick David, 10. Duncan Weir, 9. Francois Hougaard; 1. Ethan Waller, 2. Matt Moulds (c), 3. Nick Schonert, 4. Anton Bresler, 5. Graham Kitchener, 6. Ted Hill, 7. Marco Mama, 8. Cornell du Preez.

Replacements: 16. Niall Annett, 17. Kai Owen,18. Richard Palframan, 19. Andrew Kitchener, 20. Sam Lewis, 21. Michael Heaney, 22. Jono Lance, 23. Scott van Breda.

Last time out

Saturday, March 23rd | Bristol Bears 25-27 Worcester Warriors | Gallagher Premiership

Bristol Bears fell short of a second-half comeback as Worcester Warriors held on to secure a narrow win on another dramatic afternoon at Ashton Gate.

An early penalty try and Luke Morahan’s 18th-minute score had edged Bristol in front on the half-hour mark, but three tries in 19 minutes from the Warriors saw them take the impetus, with two penalties from Duncan Weir firing them into a nine-point lead in the final quarter.

Bristol hit back with a well-worked try from Callum Sheedy, who had earlier added two penalties, to set up a tense finale in BS3.

But with Ben Te’o in the sin-bin, Bristol were unable to make the numerical advantage pay, as last week’s match-winner, Ian Madigan saw his long-range penalty drifting agonisingly wide of the uprights on 76 minutes.

With time ticking away, Andy Uren scooped up a loose ball and charged for the line, but his offload evaded the supporting Dan Thomas, and Warriors held on to take the spoils.

Read the full report here. 

Word from the camp

Callum Sheedy insists Bristol Bears are focused on delivering an improved display when Worcester Warriors visit Ashton Gate on Sunday (1pm KO).

The fly half surpassed 500 points for the club last weekend in the victory over Northampton. Only Adrian Jarvis (933), Felipe Contepomi (861), Jason Strange (825), Mark Tainton (757) and Paul Burke (576) have scored more competitive points in Bristol colours

Subscribe to Bristol Bears TV by clicking here.

Form guide

Bristol Bears are unbeaten in their last four first team matches since their 18-31 reversal at Leicester in round eight of Gallagher Premiership Rugby.

Bristol have lost just once in any competition at Ashton Gate since March: 21-26 to Wasps in Premiership Rugby on December 27th.

Worcester Warriors have slipped to three straight defeats in Gallagher Premiership Rugby but have not lost four in succession in the same season since 2017/18.

Warriors have won only once away from home in Premiership Rugby since March: 19-14 at Harlequins in round four.

Worcester’s only defeat in their last seven encounters with Bristol in all tournaments was 20-28 at Ashton Gate in Premiership Rugby on Boxing Day 2016.

Bristol Bears: DWW
Worcester Warriors: LLL 


Chris Vui vs Ted Hill

It's the Samoa captain against the England hopeful on the blindside flank on Sunday, as Chris Vui - moved from second row to the back row - takes on Ted Hill.

Henry Purdy vs Perry Humphreys

Fresh from signing a new two-year contract at Bristol Bears, Henry Purdy earns his second start on the wing where he faces off with Warriors' Perry Humphreys.

Statto's corner

  • Academy graduate Will Capon set for first Premiership start
  • Bristol have lost just once in any competition at Ashton Gate since March: 21-26 to on December 27th
  • Worcester Warriors have slipped to three straight defeats in Gallagher Premiership Rugby but have not lost four in succession in the same season since 2017/18

Match sponsor: Bentley Bristol