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Will Carpenter

Will Carpenter writes

Posted Wednesday, January 27th 2021

'We've got to keep growing' - Lam

Pat Lam says the two-week enforced break in the Gallagher Premiership season has been ‘a blessing in disguise’ as the Bears gear up for Friday night’s West Country derby at Ashton Gate.

The Bears are top of the table heading into the round seven clash with their local rivals, but the Director of Rugby is expecting a stern test from a Bath side ‘full of quality.’

'Bath are dangerous'

“It’s a derby and there are some quality players in that Bath side, and we know how dangerous they can be. We fully expect them to be fired up and coming at us, but the two weeks hasn’t been about Bath, the two weeks has been about us and about where we can continue to climb that mountain.

“That’s been a big emphasis and we know that sure, we’re ahead of the pack at the moment, but we’ve got to keep growing ourselves, it’s always been about our improvement over these four years, about how we get better.

“It was disappointing initially, not to play, but it’s actually been a blessing in disguise. Not the fact that we haven’t played rugby or have rested, it’s more about the quality of the work that we’ve managed to get done in those two weeks.

“Some guys got their deserved rest, but the majority of the squad, we all came in and we’ve worked pretty hard on our game and done some work that maybe we’d normally reserve for pre-season. So, with nine games non-stop, to be able to get the conditioning, improve our game, spend some time culturally as well, improve leadership, it’s been phenomenal for us, so now it’s all about sharpening the axe as we go into games.”

'Proud of Bears' internationals'

Harry Randall last week became the fifth Bears player to receive a call-up ahead of the Six Nations campaign, alongside Ben Earl, Max Malins and Callum Sheedy – and Lam says the club is proud of its international cohort.

“I’m very pleased for all of the international players. We’re very proud of all of them and particularly Harry (Randall), as our third Foundation Bears to gain international honours and I think I read recently that Eddie (Jones) is looking to improve the game, change it up, and that selection is a great selection.

“He’ll bring real energy and passion and pace to the game. He’s a quality player and we’re all looking forward to seeing him put the white jersey on and do well, and the same for Callum with Wales.

“That will be a good game, it would be great if both are playing when England play Wales – and again, Max and Ben, they are just going from strength to strength as well, so we’re very proud of them.”


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