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Centurion Matthews eyeing Quins momentum

It will be a hundred up for Charlie Matthews if he features in Harlequins’ European Challenge Cup clash this weekend but the lock is more concerned that his team keep their current momentum rolling.

The 24-year-old has already played 99 games in a Harlequins shirt – 63 of those coming in Aviva Premiership Rugby – meaning he will reach a century of appearances if he features against Calvisano this weekend.

Quins take on the Italian outfit for the second consecutive weekend after Luke Wallace ran in two of their eight tries during a 50-10 romp at the Peroni Stadium last Saturday.

This Saturday’s match-up will take place at the Twickenham Stoop and Matthews acknowledges that the hosts are desperate to keep their momentum going by securing a seventh victory in their last eight games.

And as he prepares to reach his personal milestone, the second-rower admits it doesn’t feel that far in the past that he was a fresh-faced rookie.

“Obviously I’m immensely proud to reach 100 games for the club, especially being so young,” said Matthews.

“It wasn’t something I’d really thought about and although I knew it was coming up, it was only last week that somebody told me it would be this weekend against Calvisano.

“It’s come round so quickly – it’s only four years and my debut certainly doesn’t feel that long ago. It’s been great to be involved so heavily.

“We were very pleased with how we played against Calvisano last time out and now we’re looking forward to the rematch this weekend and getting a similar result.

“It can be tough to get in the right mindset, so we don’t think about the opposition or us going in as favourites – we focus on ourselves and what we want to do as a team.

“It’s not a training run but it’s a good opportunity for us to put into practice what we’ve been working on.

“We want to produce the same intensity and hunger as we do against the top teams and we’re keen to keep our momentum going.

“We always talk about maintaining momentum – even in the Aviva A League, where we go down to watch as a team, it’s important that the club has momentum.”

It has been a busy past week off the field for Harlequins as well with back-rower Jack Clifford and winger Marland Yarde both signing new deals with the club.

Former Super XV-winning back-rower Beau Robinson has also joined Quins as cover for the injured Netani Talei and Matthews is convinced such pieces of business demonstrate have bright the future is at the Twickenham Stoop.

“It’s always great to hear that boys are signing on – it proves that we’re doing something right as a club that the boys want to be here,” he added.

“Part of that is because we’re always aiming big and we want to win every competition we are in.” 

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