Challenge Cup: Edinburgh’s Mark Bennett believes home advantage will be helpful against Wasps

Dylan Coetzee

Edinburgh centre Mark Bennett is hopeful that the atmosphere created by their new DAM Health Stadium will give his side a boost when they welcome Wasps for their Challenge Cup quarter-finals this weekend.

Since moving into the stadium, Edinburgh has enjoyed success and will be looking to continue their European charge after qualifying for the United Rugby Championship playoffs last weekend.


Bennett loves the new stadium and cannot wait to run out in front of the hoe crowd he believes can help push them over the line.

“The stadium’s been amazing,” the 29-year-old centre said. “The pitch is brilliant and we play a great brand of rugby on it. The atmosphere it generates is awesome. We had a sell-out at the weekend and the crowd were huge for us. It’s been a real positive step for us coming in here.

“We’ve got huge games to finish the season and the atmosphere in here will help. It’s great that we’ve got a home quarter-final because those games are usually down to tight margins so hopefully the crowd can pull us through.”

Bennett is looking to help his team continue to perform in Europe after having claimed some crucial wins in their campaign.

“It’s massively exciting,” he said of this weekend’s last-eight showdown. “We’ve been here before a couple of times in the last few years and we’ve not managed to progress so as a club we’ve got to go that one step further and keep pushing towards hopefully winning the tournament.

“We’ve played some huge teams in this tournament. Saracens away was a huge result, London Irish down there was a good challenge for us, and then Bath at home was another really challenge. It doesn’t get any easier this weekend.”

Bennett believes dwelling on their 16-10 loss to Ulster will not do his team any good as they look to right the ship this weekend.

“We’re massively disappointed because we had plenty opportunities to win that game which we never
took,” he said. “On the flip side, the fact we put Ulster under more pressure than most teams have this season, but we’ve got to take those chances because that game was there to be won.

“We’ve got a massive game at home this weekend to right our wrongs. Wasps will be a great challenge. It’s a really exciting week ahead for the club.”

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