Bristol excited about facing Toulon in Challenge Cup final - Pat Lam

Can Pat Lam guide Bristol to European Challenge Cup title victory?
Can Pat Lam guide Bristol to European Challenge Cup title victory?
©Steve Haag

Bristol Bears director of rugby Pat Lam said the team is relishing the opportunity to face Toulon in the European Challenge Cup final on Friday.

Bristol reached the final following a 37-20 win over Bordeaux Begles last month and now are aiming to win their first European title as they face the French side, who ousted Leicester Tigers in the semi-final.

The Ashton Gate based club had an impressive run since the game restarted in August but their campaign in the Premiership ended with a 47-24 defeat to Wasps in the semi-final.

Admitting that the defeat was disappointing, Lam wants the club to make amends and create history by winning the Challenge Cup this weekend.

“This is massive for us; we’ve worked hard for this,” said Lam.

“Right from the beginning, to have some tangible silverware would be the start of a process of trying to do this year in, year out.

“Obviously, we’re disappointed from the defeat to Wasps, missing an opportunity to get to a final, but to have this game after last week, is huge.

“In a final, when you play the game and that full-time whistle goes, there’s a real reward that you get handed over to you – it’s something that all rugby players, coaches and management look forward to, but there is enough of us who have experienced them to understand that there’s a lot of work that goes into it.

“So, this week has all been about taking our learnings from what happened last week and then channelling all of the excitement of a final into making sure we tick off a lot of boxes, and making sure we are ready to go and get the performance that will give us the best chance of winning that silverware.”