Quins not taking Bristol lightly

Tue, 30 Aug 2016 15:42
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INTERVIEW:Jamie Roberts says it will be a privilege to play when Harlequins face Premiership new-boys Bristol Rugby at Twickenham as part of the London Double Header this Saturday.

Quins take on the Championship winners at the home of English rugby after Premiership champions Saracens kick off the 2016-17 campaign by facing Worcester Warriors at the same venue.

The Welsh centre has never played in the Premiership's curtain-raiser before, and ahead of his second season at Twickenham Stoop, outlined the significance of the game.

"At club level this is one of the biggest days in the calendar, and something which is new to me," said Roberts. "To get the opportunity to play at Twickenham for Quins is a privilege, and fingers crossed I earn selection for that game.

"It was a massive experience to be able to play at a sold-out Twickenham last year [in the Big Game against Gloucester], and to kick off the campaign with a game of that magnitude at the London Double Header really sets the tone for the season and shows how big Premiership rugby is."

Roberts believes that part of the London Double Header's attraction is the fact it is the biggest and best of its kind.

"For the fans it’s a huge day out, two games in one day and three hours of rugby is unrivalled," he said. "There’s not much of it around either, particularly in XVs, and you have to look towards Sevens for that full day out at the rugby.

"There's Judgement Day back in Cardiff which is a counterpart, but I never got to play in one of those due to injury.

"But having done that at the Big Game you can start to get a feel of what it's like to wear the club shirt in front of that big crowd."

For newly-promoted Bristol, playing in the London Double Header will be a reminder of how far they have come since winning their third Championship title in May with a two-legged victory over Doncaster Knights.

Quins will be the bookmakers' favourites, but Roberts insists John Kingston's side won't be taking their opponents lightly as they look to improve on their seventh-place finish last season.

"There's no risk of complacency," said Roberts. “Bristol are a team who will come very well coached, very well trained and ready to take us on.

"There’s no doubt they'll be a tough opposition on their first time back up. They'll want to impress in the early rounds and with that comes its risks. There's huge incentive for them winning at Twickenham."

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FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Fri, 27 April 2018
Hurricanes v Sunwolves 07h35 Wellington
Stormers v Rebels 13h00 Newlands
Leicester Tigers v Newcastle Falcons 18h45 Welford Road
Sat, 28 April 2018
Reds v Lions 05h05 Suncorp Stadium
Blues v Jaguares 07h35 Eden Park
Brumbies v Crusaders 09h45 Canberra
Kings v Cheetahs 13h00 Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium
Exeter Chiefs v Sale Sharks 14h00 Sandy Park
Worcester Warriors v Harlequins 14h00 Sixways
Gloucester v Bath 14h00 Kingsholm
Connacht v Leinster 14h05 Sportsground
Dragons v Scarlets 14h05 Rodney Parade
Bulls v Highlanders 15h15 Loftus Versfeld
Treviso v Zebre 16h00 Stadio Monigo
Cardiff Blues v Ospreys 16h35 Cardiff Arms Park
Munster v Ulster 16h35 Thomond Park
Edinburgh v Glasgow Warriors 18h35 Myreside
Sun, 29 April 2018
London Irish v Saracens 14h00 Madejski Stadium
Wasps v Northampton Saints 14h00 Ricoh Arena
RESULT SCORE
Sun, 22 April 2018
Racing Metro v Munster 27 | 22
Brumbies v Jaguares 20 | 25
Sat, 21 April 2018
Ulster v Glasgow Warriors 36 | 15
Zebre v Ospreys 37 | 14
Sharks v Stormers 24 | 17
Leinster v Scarlets 38 | 16
Bulls v Rebels 28 | 10
Reds v Chiefs 12 | 36
Crusaders v Sunwolves 33 | 11
Fri, 20 April 2018
Waratahs v Lions 0 | 29
Blues v Highlanders 16 | 34
Sun, 15 April 2018
Saracens v Bath 41 | 6
London Irish v Exeter Chiefs 5 | 45
Sat, 14 April 2018
Leinster v Treviso 15 | 17
Kings v Cardiff Blues 12 | 45
PREMIERSHIP
MORE LOGS
Team P W D L Pts
Exeter Chiefs 20 15 0 5 75
Saracens 20 14 0 6 67
Wasps 20 12 1 7 61
Newcastle Falcons 20 13 0 7 59
Leicester Tigers 20 2 0 8 57
Gloucester 20 11 1 8 56
Sale Sharks 20 10 0 10 54
Bath 20 9 0 11 46
Harlequins 20 7 0 13 36
Northampton Saints 20 7 0 13 36
Worcester Warriors 20 6 0 14 31
London Irish 20 3 0 17 22