Fixtures - Top Bar

Exeter Chiefs’ Ollie Devoto banks on home comforts

Ollie Devoto is banking on home comforts to help reignite the Exeter Chiefs ahead of Sunday’s crunch Aviva Premiership encounter with former club Bath at Sandy Park (3pm).

After back-to-back losses in the European Champions Cup against ASM Clermont Auvergne and Ulster, the Devon outfit resume domestic matters this weekend with a mouth-watering local derby encounter.

With a sell-out crowd already assured and both clubs desperate to claim vital league points, the 23-year-old – who swapped playing life in the Roman City for that of Exeter this summer – believes this latest match-up has all the makings of a classic encounter.

Preview of Exeter Chiefs v Bath Rugby

“Having played in these local derbies before they are the games you look forward to the most. We are really excited for it,” said Devoto. “The derby games against the Chiefs are some of the ones I remember the most because I remember the atmosphere at Sandy Park and they were some of the best games to be involved in.”

Although defeated right at the death in Ulster last time out, the England international felt the display in Belfast provided plenty of positives from which to build this week.

“It is important for us to get results now. We always back ourselves at home and this weekend is going to be a huge game for us,” he continued. “I think it is important we now start turning performances like Saturday into actual results. We have caught little glimpses of what we can do, but it is about riding the pressure.

“Sometimes in games, the opposition are going to get the upper hand, but it is about coming through those difficult patches intact.

“There were a lot of positives to take from the Ulster game. We put ourselves in a position to win it which not many teams can do over there in European competition because it is so tough.”

With just two wins this term, it’s been a spluttering start to the campaign for last season’s beaten Premiership finalists, but a victory this weekend against a Bath outfit that have lost only once under new coach Todd Blackadder would certainly help lift spirits.

“I would say there has been a little bit of a ramp-up in training this week. I think you need to get into just the right mindset and we have had a good few days’ training,” added Devoto.

“There is no need to panic but the senior boys are really driving standards and we are looking to get some really good performances in, particularly before the Anglo-Welsh Cup the following week.”

Sunday’s fixture will be the first meeting of the two Westcountry rivals since last term, when honours were shared in the respective fixtures. Bath won on the opening day at the Rec 19-17 before the Chiefs gained revenge back in February, winning the return leg 26-17.

Latest News

Match Report: Wasps 35 Gloucester Rugby 22

Wasps utility back Jimmy Gopperth claimed 25 points including a hat-trick as his team restored a six-point advantage at the…

Match Report: Bristol Rugby 12 Bath Rugby 11

Gavin Henson kicked 12 points against former club Bath Rugby on his first Aviva Premiership Rugby start since October as…

Match Reaction: Exeter Chiefs 36 Newcastle Falcons 14

They may have gone above defending champions Saracens and into second place in the Aviva Premiership Rugby table, but Exeter…

Match Reaction: Saracens 29 Sale Sharks 18

Saracens director of rugby Mark McCall picked out back rower Joel Conlon as the stand-out player in his side’s 29-18…

Match Reaction: Northampton Saints 24 Worcester Warriors 14

Jim Mallinder backed his side to continue their push up the table after they moved into Aviva Premiership Rugby’s top…

Match Report: Northampton Saints 24 Worcester Warriors 14

Mikey Haywood scored two tries as Northampton Saints came from behind to down Worcester Warriors and move into Aviva Premiership Rugby's…

Match Report: Exeter Chiefs 36 Newcastle Falcons 14

Exeter Chiefs fought their way to a bonus point victory over Newcastle Falcons to move up to second in Aviva…

Match Report: Saracens 29 Sale Sharks 18

Saracens recorded their first Aviva Premiership Rugby win since New Year’s Day with a 29-18 success over an in-form Sale…

Match Reaction: Harlequins 18 Leicester Tigers 27

Assistant coach Geordan Murphy tipped his cap to a steely second-half showing from the Leicester Tigers replacements, who changed the…

England Under-20 secure impressive bonus-point win over Italy

England secured their third bonus-point win of the 2017 Six Nations with an eight-try 46-0 victory over Italy at the…

Match Report: Harlequins 18 Leicester Tigers 27

Leicester Tigers’ impressive second-half comeback saw them score 24 unanswered points and stun hosts Harlequins at Twickenham Stoop to claim…