Fixtures - Top Bar

Luke Arscott: Jason Woodward’s influence at Bristol Rugby is far-reaching

Full-back Jason Woodward may be absent when Bristol Rugby line up against Bath Rugby on Friday but Luke Arscott insists his influence reaches far beyond the pitch.

As well as igniting the Bristol backline in recent weeks, in particular the form of Tom Varndell who has five tries in seven Aviva Premiership Rugby games, Woodward’s positive mentality has been far-reaching.

But the 26-year-old won’t be available for Bristol’s vital European Challenge Cup game against Bath after a knock to the head in Bristol’s 32-26 defeat at Northampton Saints.

Despite the setback, Arscott promised Woodward’s attacking mindset, he scored 21 points for his side in the weekend’s defeat, will be taken on by the squad.

“Woodward’s been brilliant not just on the pitch but around the club and in meetings, he’s a good guy to have around,” Arscott said.

“He’s been pretty influential all over the club with his ideas and southern hemisphere mindset. It’s just a lot of positivity, he wants to attack a lot in the way he plays and you can see that.

“The other boys have bought into that. The person who has benefitted the most is Tom Varndell, he’s scoring tries off his breaks.

“They have been brilliant together, they link up very well, and it’s been a great effort from them and the rest of the back line.”

This weekend will be the third meeting this season between the West Country rivals with Bath Rugby taking the spoils 22-6 and 16-9 earlier this season both times at The Rec.

Friday’s meeting will be their first of the year at Ashton Gate and after back-to-back victories against Pau in December, Bristol are in with a chance of qualification from Pool 4.

They trail both Bath and Cardiff Blues by three points and while Arscott admits the atmosphere in the local derby is special, the squad isn’t treating the game any differently to normal.

“We have not talked about the change of competition we are taking each game as it comes,” he said.

“Obviously it’s a derby which is a massive occasion for us and the fans. We owe them a favour after they stuck with us at the start of the season.

“It’s a completely unique feeling really its two teams with massive histories and pressure and the fans adds to it as well.

“It’s a massive game and everyone wants to put in a massive performance.”

Latest News

Jack Nowell relishing Exeter Chiefs return

Cornishman Jack Nowell says he cannot wait to pull on an Exeter Chiefs jersey again as he gears up for…

Jack Nowell

Mark Jennings Signs New Two Year Deal

Sale Sharks are delighted to announce that centre Mark Jennings has signed a new two year deal with the club.…

Mark Jennings

Team News: Bristol Rugby vs Gloucester Rugby

Sam Jeffries is set for his first Aviva Premiership start when Bristol host Gloucester in the West Country derby on…

Billy Searle

Gloucester Rugby name side for West Country derby at Bristol

Henry Trinder will make his first start in the Aviva Premiership this season as Gloucester make seven changes to their…

Henry Trinder

Sam Lewis: Worcester Warriors not letting up

Worcester Warriors went a long way to securing their Aviva Premiership Rugby safety last time out but flanker Sam Lewis…

Michael Dowsett signs permanent Worcester Warriors deal

Warriors have completed the permanent signing of English-qualified scrum-half Michael Dowsett. Dowsett, who celebrates his 25th birthday today, has made…

Michael Dowsett

Newcastle Falcons sign forward pair

Newcastle Falcons have strengthened their forward pack for next season with the signings of Lyon prop Sami Mavinga and Jersey…

Sami Mavinga

Wasps’ Dan Robson set to earn 100th top-flight appearance against Worcester

Wasps scrum-half Dan Robson is set to make his 100th Aviva Premiership Rugby appearance when the league leaders host Worcester…

‘One Turf Concept’ agreed by rugby, soccer and hockey

World Rugby, FIFA and the International Hockey Federation (FIH) have developed a ground-breaking protocol for multi-surface playing fields that could…

Premiership Rugby Balls

Referee appointments: Wayne Barnes takes charge of 180th Aviva Premiership Rugby clash

Referee Wayne Barnes makes his return to Aviva Premiership Rugby action this weekend, as he takes charge of the huge…

Bath Rugby’s Semesa Rokoduguni raring to go for The Clash

Bath winger Semesa Rokoduguni is already counting down the days until his side meet with old rivals Leicester Tigers in…

Semesa Rokoduguni

Aviva Premiership Rugby on BT Sport and ITV

England’s triumphant Six Nations stars will return to their Aviva Premiership Rugby clubs this weekend to continue their assault on…

Sam Aspland-Robinson and Calum Waters re-sign with Harlequins

Harlequins is delighted to confirm today (Wednesday 22nd March) that Academy members Sam Aspland-Robinson and Calum Waters have committed their…

Calum Waters

George Nott Signs A Five Year Deal With Sale Sharks

George Nott has become the latest Sale Sharks player to commit his long term future to the club after signing…

George Nott

Will Hurrell: Bristol Rugby will fight until the very end

Bristol Rugby have been left to lick their wounds for almost three weeks following their disappointing defeat to Worcester Warriors…

Break came at the right time for rejuvenated Sale Sharks, says Magnus Lund

Sale Sharks’ Magnus Lund believes his teammates have taken the opportunity to clear their heads during the Aviva Premiership Rugby…

Leicester Tigers’ George McGuigan ready to kick on after Anglo-Welsh Cup triumph

Leicester Tigers hooker George McGuigan believes his side can draw on their Anglo-Welsh Cup victory over Exeter Chiefs when they…

Jonny May itching to return for Gloucester Rugby ahead of Bristol challenge

Gloucester Rugby winger Jonny May is raring to play again in club colours after featuring in three of England’s four victories in a title-winning…

Marc Jones and Will Cliff re-sign for Sale Sharks

Sale Sharks are delighted to announce that Marc Jones and Will Cliff have re-signed for Sale Sharks, both on two…

Marc Jones and Will Cliff re-sign for Sale Sharks