Fixtures - Top Bar

Lees and Exeter Chiefs desperate to double up

The season run-in is a succession of knockout games for Exeter Chiefs as they compete on two fronts and lock Mitch Lees admits he is relishing a dream first season at the club.

Currently embroiled in a nip-and-tuck battle for the Aviva Premiership Rugby semi-finals, the Chiefs this week turn their attention back to Europe and the small matter of a European Rugby Challenge Cup quarter-final.

It will be the Newcastle Falcons who come to Sandy Park on Saturday night and will face a Chiefs side that have lost their last two to fall from second to fifth in the league standings.

A top-four spot is still a solitary point away, indeed the standings are so tight that Saracens in second are only three points clear meaning a home semi-final is still up for grabs.

And with European matters on the table this week, Lees admits that he and his teammates cannot afford any slip-ups between now and the end of the season.

“The top of the Premiership is very tight,” said the 26-year-old. 

“Every game can cost you a spot so we want to push and win every single one to give us the best chance of making the semis of the Prem and also in Europe.

“This weekend is a big game for the club, a quarter-final in Europe is huge.

“Our last two defeats have both been a bit unlucky, there is nothing to worry about and we are full of energy to
go out there.

“Especially at home with a night game and the Sky Sports cameras, we don’t have that very often.

“Two years on the bounce, the Chiefs trying to make it to a new cup final, this is big for the club and big for the players.”

Formerly of London Welsh, Lees has enjoyed a stellar debut season at Sandy Park, making 13 Aviva Premiership Rugby appearances.

Lees came off the bench the last time the Falcons came to Exeter in the league in February as the Chiefs handed down a 46-17 beating.

But Lees insists they will be facing a very different Falcons side on Saturday night.

“We definitely expect a reaction (to the 46-17 defeat), they are a good side,” he added. 

“But we are focusing on ourselves, pushing our standards up high so when we do run out on the pitch in the first 40 minutes we will be able to take it like we did that game, to run at them and throw our game at them rather than wait and expect something from them.

“Having a home quarter-final will be huge, especially for them it’s a far way to go. We should have close to a sell out or a sell out crowd, the fans are a big factor in how we perform on the pitch.

“Our fans are some of the best in England, they really show it at home and away.”

Tickets to the Aviva Premiership Rugby Final are selling faster than this time last year so with just four rounds to go, now's the time to click here to book your place at the world's biggest club rugby final.

Latest News

Match Reaction: Wasps 20 Exeter Chiefs 23 (AET)

Years of hard-work have paid off for Exeter Chiefs according to head coach Rob Baxter, after the Devon side lifted…

AUDIO: Yeandle, Haskell and Townsend reflect on the Aviva Premiership final

Russell Hargreaves looks back on a dramatic and extended Aviva Premiership final at Twickenham, before speaking to victorious Exeter Chiefs…

Match Report: Wasps 20 Exeter Chiefs 23 (AET)

Seven years after kicking Exeter Chiefs into Aviva Premiership Rugby, skipper Gareth Steenson proved once again that ice runs through…

HITZ learning academy gear up for the Aviva Premiership Rugby final

Around 30 young people from across the country will be at this afternoon’s Aviva Premiership Rugby Final at Twickenham to…

Aviva Premiership Rugby Final: Review of the finalists’ most recent head-to-heads

Saturday’s Aviva Premiership Rugby Final sees table-toppers Wasps face off against second-placed Exeter Chiefs, in what promises to be a…

Six things to look out for in this Saturday’s Aviva Premiership Rugby Final

After nearly nine months of intense competition, the fate of the Aviva Premiership Rugby trophy comes down to 80 minutes…

Match Reaction: Northampton Saints 23 Stade Francais 22

Courtney Lawes revealed that he overcame illness to put in another man-of-the-match performance in Northampton Saints’ European Rugby Champions Cup…

Match Report: Northampton Saints 23 Stade Francais 22

Northampton Saints pulled off a stunning comeback victory to upset Stade Francais and secure European Champions Cup rugby for next…

Thomas Waldrom out to finish the job with Exeter Chiefs

Thomas Waldrom is ready to put the seal on a season of hard graft by helping Exeter Chiefs to lift…

Thomas Waldrom

Key moments of the season for our Aviva Premiership Rugby finalists

After two frantically-contested semi-finals, excitement is building for what will surely be a thrilling Aviva Premiership Rugby Final between Wasps…

Exeter Chiefs side to face Wasps in the Aviva Premiership Final

It was seven years today that Exeter Chiefs finally arrived at English rugby’s top table. On a wet and wild…

Olly Woodburn

Wasps team to play Exeter Chiefs in the Aviva Premiership Final

Director of Rugby Dai Young has named his Wasps’ side for the Aviva Premiership Final against Exeter Chiefs, at Twickenham…

Josh Bassett and Willie Le Roux

Sean Maitland signs contract extension with Saracens

Saracens are delighted to announce that Scotland international Sean Maitland has signed a contract extension with the Club. Capped 28…

Sean Maitland

Ashley Johnson ready for daunting Twickenham final challenge

Wasps might have finished the Aviva Premiership Rugby season top of the table but hooker Ashley Johnson believes they will…

Netani Talei retires from rugby

Harlequins back-row Netani Talei has today (Thursday 25th May) announced that he will retire from the game following medical advice.…

Netani Talei

Aviva Premiership Rugby Final – safety of supporters

The safety of our supporters is of upmost importance to Premiership Rugby. As a result, we have been working for…

Win a Citizen Watch and a ball signed by this year’s Aviva Premiership Rugby champions

Celebrating being the Official Timekeeper of Premiership Rugby, Citizen are offering you the chance to win a Citizen Watch up…

England Squad Announced to Play in Old Mutual Wealth Cup Against the Barbarians

Eddie Jones has named his England squad to play in the Old Mutual Wealth Cup against the Barbarians on Sunday…