Planet Rugby

Preview: Gloucester v Harlequins

28th March 2013 12:18

Share:

Harlequins v Gloucester 2012

Shackled: Tom Casson

Gloucester director of rugby Nigel Davies makes one change to his backline and four in the pack to welcome Harlequins to Kingsholm.

Third in the Aviva Premiership table will play fifth as the race for top four places hots up, and the game at Kingsholm kicks off a weekend of key action.

The one change in the backs from the team that started against London Welsh last weekend, sees Henry Trinder replace Mike Tindall in the midfield as Gloucester continue to field an all English back line.

Up front, Koree Britton will make his first start in the Aviva Premiership at hooker, while Lua Lokotui returns to partner Jim Hamilton in the second row.

Meanwhile, Tom Savage and Akapusi Qera resume their usual positions as blindside and openside flanker respectively.

After three weeks without a game, Davies acknowledged that his team weren't initially at their best against London Welsh last weekend but will be looking for a more complete performance against Harlequins.

"We were probably a bit rusty, definitely didn't work to the patterns that we did earlier in the season, although we saw a bit of it towards the end of the game in the last 20 minutes when we opened it up again," said Davies.

"What we've done this week is look within ourselves as a group, just refocus on what's important to us and look at the individuals that we have within the team and what we're capable of.

"It's all about how we perform on Friday night. It's a big game, against a tough opponent who have been trailblazing over the last two or three years in terms of their performances and results. So, it'll be a big test for us.

"But we're still very much in the fight. It's about seeing what we can do, and taking our game to the next level."

Meanwhile, with just a five-day turnaround between the back-to-back away games, Harlequins make six changes to the starting line-up that lost to Saracens last Sunday.

Among the backs, Ross Chisholm comes in for Ugo Monye, while George Lowe and Tom Casson combine in the centres in place of Jordan Turner-Hall and Matt Hopper.

In the forwards, Rob Buchanan is named at hooker, with Olly Kohn returning from a hamstring injury to start in the second row.

With Chris Robshaw being rested for this fixture, Luke Wallace joins Tom Guest and Nick Easter, who captains the team, in the back-row.

Form: Quins will attempt to win at Kingsholm against Gloucester in the Aviva Premiership this weekend for the first time in 14 years as Conor O'Shea's men look to avoid losing a third straight league game. Harlequins have slipped to successive defeats at the hands of Exeter Chiefs and Saracens, adding no league points to their total in the process and have not lost three games in succession in the Premiership since early 2010. Gloucester's only defeat at Kingsholm in the Aviva Premiership since the opening weekend was to London Irish in January. Harlequins were victorious when the two clubs met at the Twickenham Stoop in round 8, but the Londoners have not won at Kingsholm in the Premiership since 13 February 1999.

The teams:

Gloucester: 15 Rob Cook, 14 Charlie Sharples, 13 Henry Trinder, 12 Billy Twelvetrees, 11 Jonny May, 10 Freddie Burns, 9 Dan Robson, 8 Sione Kalamafoni, 7 Akapusi Qera, 6 Tom Savage, 5 Jim Hamilton (c), 4 Lua Lokotui, 3 Shaun Knight, 2 Koree Britton, 1 Dan Murphy.
Replacements: 16 Huia Edmonds, 17 Nick Wood, 18 Dario Chistolini, 19 Will James, 20 Andy Hazell, 21 Dave Lewis, 22 Mike Tindall, 23 Martyn Thomas.

Harlequins: 15 Mike Brown, 14 Ross Chisholm, 13 George Lowe, 12 Tom Casson, 11 Sam Smith, 10 Nick Evans, 9 Danny Care, 8 Nick Easter (c), 7 Luke Wallace, 6 Tom Guest, 5 George Robson, 4 Olly Kohn, 3 James Johnston, 2 Rob Buchanan, 1 Joe Marler.
Replacements: 16 Joe Gray, 17 Mark Lambert, 18 Will Collier, 19 Charlie Matthews, 20 Joe Trayfoot, 21 Karl Dickson, 22 Ben Botica, 23 Matt Hopper.

Date: Saturday, 29 March
Venue: Kingsholm
Kick-off: 19:45 GMT
Referee: JP Doyle
Assistant referees: Kevin Stewart, Stuart Terheege
TMO: Geoffrey Warren

Forthcoming Fixtures
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Aviva Premiership
Sunday , November 23
Saracens vs NorthamptonSaracens vs Northampton Preview
London Welsh vs Leicester TigersLondon Welsh vs Leicester Tigers Preview
Friday , November 28
Bath vs Harlequins19:45
Saturday , November 29
Leicester vs Wasps15:00
Exeter vs Saracens16:30
More Aviva Premiership fixtures
International Match
Sunday , November 23
Georgia vs JapanGeorgia vs Japan Preview
Saturday , November 29
Wales vs South Africa14:30
England vs Australia14:30
More International Match fixtures
Guinness PRO12
Sunday , November 23
Treviso vs LeinsterTreviso vs Leinster Preview
Edinburgh vs Cardiff BluesEdinburgh vs Cardiff Blues Preview
Friday , November 28
Munster vs Ulster19:35
Cardiff Blues vs Treviso19:35
Saturday , November 29
Zebre vs Edinburgh15:00
Leinster vs Ospreys17:15
Connacht vs Scarlets19:30
More Guinness PRO12 fixtures
Top 14
Saturday , November 29
Oyonnax vs Bordeaux-Begles18:00
Lyon vs Montpellier18:00
La Rochelle vs Bayonne18:00
Castres vs Racing Metro Paris18:00
Toulon vs Clermont Auvergne18:00
More Top 14 fixtures
Recent Results
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Aviva Premiership
Saturday , November 22
London Irish 23 - 33 BathLondon Irish vs Bath Report
Exeter 31 - 15 WaspsExeter vs Wasps Report
More Aviva Premiership results
International Match
Italy 6 - 22 South AfricaItaly vs South Africa Report
Ireland 26 - 23 AustraliaIreland vs Australia Report
England 28 - 9 Samoa
Wales 16 - 34 New ZealandWales vs New Zealand Report
Romania 18 - 9 CanadaRomania vs Canada Report
Scotland 37 - 12 TongaScotland vs Tonga Report
France 13 - 18 ArgentinaFrance vs Argentina Report
More International Match results
Aviva Premiership
Friday , November 21
Harlequins 12 - 16 Sale SharksHarlequins vs Sale Sharks Report
Newcastle Falcons 20 - 10 GloucesterNewcastle Falcons vs Gloucester Report
More Aviva Premiership results
International Match
Fiji 20 - 14 USAFiji vs USA Report
More International Match results
Guinness PRO12
Dragons 12 - 38 MunsterDragons vs Munster Report
Ulster 25 - 16 OspreysUlster vs Ospreys Report
Scarlets 19 - 9 Glasgow WarriorsScarlets vs Glasgow Warriors Report
Connacht 43 - 3 ZebreConnacht vs Zebre Report
More Guinness PRO12 results
Aviva Premiership
Sunday , November 16
Leicester Tigers 21 - 21 SaracensLeicester Tigers vs Saracens Report
Wasps 71 - 7 London WelshWasps vs London Welsh Report
More Aviva Premiership results
International Match
Ireland 49 - 7 GeorgiaIreland vs Georgia Report
More International Match results
Aviva Premiership
Saturday , November 15
Sale Sharks 36 - 8 London IrishSale Sharks vs London Irish Report
Bath 23 - 14 Newcastle FalconsBath vs Newcastle Falcons Report
More Aviva Premiership results
International Match
Romania 13 - 18 JapanRomania vs Japan Report
France 29 - 26 AustraliaFrance vs Australia Report
Scotland 16 - 24 New ZealandScotland vs New Zealand Report
England 28 - 31 South AfricaEngland vs South Africa Report
More International Match results
Aviva Premiership Table
PosTeamPPts
1Exeter828
2Bath828
3Northampton726
4Saracens724
5Wasps820