Fixtures - Top Bar

Bath Rugby Matt Garvey ready for tough Exeter Chiefs test

Bath Rugby may have made a fast start this season but flanker Matt Garvey insists Sunday’s clash at last season’s Aviva Premiership Rugby runners-up Exeter Chiefs will show how far they have come since Todd Blackadder arrived in the summer.

Bath sit third after five wins from six league matches, including impressive away victories at Northampton Saints and Gloucester Rugby.

They also got their European campaign off to a flying start with back-to-back victories against Pau and Bristol in the Challenge Cup, but now face one of the toughest prospects in the Aviva Premiership – a trip to Sandy Park.

Exeter had a formidable home record last season, winning ten of their 11 league matches, but Rob Baxter’s men have made a comparably slow start this time, tirumphing in just one of their three home games.

However, Garvey still expects a tough, physical contest and believes matches like these give a true representation of how good a side is.

“It is always a big game against Exeter no matter the form you are in and we have had some great games against them in the last couple of years. They are always great contests,” he said.

“It will be a good measure of where we are at. I am sure it will show us some of our weaknesses because they are a great team.

“The way we are feeling right now, we are confident that we can go there and get a result.

“We were in a similar position to them last year. When you get to a Premiership final there is a lot of pressure but if you look at their squad you see a depth there that many squads don’t have.

“Our defence has been very successful so far and it is something we are very pleased with. But we are asking why we are defending so much.

“We have got to keep the ball better and keep it for longer. Exeter are a team who play multiple phases and we are confident in our defence, but we need to keep it for longer if we are going to win.

“They will be more dangerous this weekend because they have not enjoyed such a good start and they are always tough games between us.”

Garvey is currently co-captaining Bath along with England international fly-half George Ford in the absence of club skipper Guy Mercer.

The pair have impressed in the role and admit they enjoy it, although Mercer’s imminent return from injury means Garvey will revert back to being a regular squad player soon.

“Things are going well but they are always better when you are winning. I have enjoyed being co-captain, I have learnt a lot about myself,” he said.

“I have had to change a few things in terms of my attitude and preparation in order to make it work better. I am not sure how long it will last for because Guy Mercer is fit now.

“I have enjoyed it while I have had it and hopefully my performances have reflected that.”

Latest News

Aviva Premiership Rugby European wrap: Saracens and Gloucester Rugby celebrate Cup finals

Saracens and Gloucester Rugby are both celebrating places in this season’s European Rugby finals after the Aviva Premiership Rugby sides…

Match Reaction: La Rochelle 14 Gloucester Rugby 16

Gloucester Rugby director of rugby David Humphreys hailed his side’s ‘unbelievable effort’ as they produced a stirring defensive display to…

Match Reaction: Munster 10 Saracens 26

Mark McCall hailed Saracens’ amazing defence after they withstood a first-half assault against Munster and emerged victorious to book a…

Match Report: La Rochelle 14 Gloucester Rugby 16

Billy Burns scored all of Gloucester Rugby’s points and the Cherry & Whites produced an impressive defensive display to down…

Match Report: Munster 10 Saracens 26

Mako Vunipola and Chris Wyles scored vital tries as Saracens booked their place in the European Champions Cup final with…

Saracens ready for titanic Munster challenge

Saracens director of rugby Mark McCall is expecting little sign of weakness from Munster when the two sides clash in…

Sell-out crowds confirmed for Champions Cup semi-finals

The semi-finals of the European Rugby Champions Cup will be played in front of sell-out crowds in Dublin and Lyon…

Sell-out crowds confirmed for Champions Cup semi-finals

England name squad for World Rugby U20 Championship

England have named their 28-man squad for the World Rugby U20 Championship taking place in Georgia (31 May – 18…

Saracens include Lions picks for Munster showdown

Saracens have named all six of their recently-selected British & Irish Lions for their European Rugby Champions Cup semi-final clash…

Dave Attwood returns for Bath Rugby’s European semi-final

Dave Attwood will make his comeback from injury as Bath Rugby face Stade Francais in the European Rugby Challenge Cup…

Willi Heinz and Greig Laidlaw return for Gloucester Rugby’s European semi-final

Gloucester Rugby welcome back scrum-halves Willi Heinz and Greig Laidlaw to the matchday squad as they make five changes to…

Archie White re-signs as Josh McNulty joins Harlequins

Harlequins is excited to announce today (Friday 21st April) that second year Academy Member Archie White has re-signed, while Gloucester…

Archie White

Saracens trio react to England call-ups – Nathan Earle, Nick Isiekwe & Alex Lozowski reaction

Three of Saracens brightest talents could make their international debut this summer, with Nathan Earle joining fellow teammates Alex Lozowski…

Saracens trio react to England call-ups - Nathan Earle, Nick Isiekwe & Alex Lozowski reaction

Jamie George: In-form Owen Farrell can fire Saracens to Aviva Premiership Rugby final once again

Jamie George has every confidence that Owen Farrell can inspire Saracens to go all the way to another Aviva Premiership…

Eddie Jones announces England squad for Argentina tour

Eddie Jones has announced a 31-man squad for England’s two-Test tour to Argentina in June. Dylan Hartley will captain a…

Dylan Hartley

Social media reacts to Premiership Rugby’s 19 Lions

The rise of social media meant it was a Lions squad announcement unlike any other yesterday as players, clubs and…

Delight for young Cranbrook stars as Land Rover Cup win secures Twickenham trip

Just a stone’s throw from England Rugby HQ, Cranbrook U12s sealed an unforgettable trip to Twickenham next month by triumphing…

Broad Plain youngsters set for Twickenham prize after Land Rover Cup triumph

George Keen and his Broad Plain U11s were left overjoyed thanks to Bristol Rugby as they earned a spot for…

Four Sharks To Tour Argentina With England

Four Sale Sharks players have been named in the England Squad for the two test tour of Argentina in June.…

Four Sharks To Tour Argentina With England