RUGBY

Gloucester Rugby Gaining Momentum

In a weekend that saw Jonny May shine for England against Argentina and Greig Laidlaw lead Scotland to victory in Kilmarnock, Gloucester have proved that they are more than ready to push on in the Aviva Premiership.

With an incredible bonus point win against Wasps last weekend followed up by a narrow defeat to league and European champions Saracens, David Humphreys’ men have proved they can mix it with the big boys in the English domestic competition.

The fact that the Cherry and Whites have taken 6 points from the last two fixtures will be a major confidence boost heading into a crucial block of fixtures.

With just three points separating Gloucester in tenth and Harlequins in sixth, fans will be hoping that the Cherry and Whites can use this momentum to push on up the table.

Here are a few players who will have to maintain their form if Gloucester are to continue to improve:

Ben Morgan

Gloucester’s man of the moment, the back row has upheld his reputation as a powerful ball carrier over the past few weeks with exceptional performances against two of the leagues top teams.

Capitalising on his good form with a try against Saracens over the weekend, many England fans expected Morgan to receive an international call up following the injury to Billy Vunipola against Argentina.

Nevertheless, Cherry and White fans will be delighted that Morgan has committed his future to Kingsholm having recently signed a new deal.

Keeping Morgan fit and carrying hard over the gain line will be essential to success for Gloucester over the coming weeks.

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Tom Savage

With the additions of Kiwi duo Jeremy Thrush and Joe Latta to the Gloucester squad in the past 18 months and the good form of Argentine Mariano Galarza, many expected Academy graduate Tom Savage to be gradually phased out of the starting line up.

But, on the contrary, the 27-year old second row has cemented himself as one of the first names on the team sheet this season. With Jeremy Thrush out with a long term injury, Savage has seized his opportunity with both hands.

Now in his sixth season at Kingsholm, Savage has consistently proved himself as an incredible defensive presence, regularly topping the tackling charts. In the game against Wasps, Savage became the first player in the Aviva Premiership to surpass 100 tackles for the 2016/17 season.

His defensive qualities will be key in helping Gloucester win the tight fought games over the winter period.

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Willi Heinz

With Greig Laidlaw away on international duty, the question was posed as to who would step up to the plate to fill the void left by the talismanic Scotsman.

In his absence, Kiwi half-back Willi Heinz has shone. With an impeccable performance against Wasps and heroic effort against Saracens, the 29-year old is staking his claim for the Gloucester nine jersey for the Six Nations period and also for the long term; with Laidlaw already confirmed to be moving on at the end of this season.

Having also signed a new contract over the past fortnight, Cherry and White fans will be happy to see the former Crusaders man committing his long term future to the club.

His quick ball from the ruck and his kicking game have proved pivotal over the past two weeks, and Heinz’ form will be key heading into the new year.

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With a game against Bristol coming up this weekend, Humphreys’ Gloucester side will be looking to take maximum points to continue their momentum going into the European double header against La Rochelle in the Challenge Cup.

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