First weekend of Aviva Premiership fixtures announced

Premiership rugby today released the fixture list for the 2017/18 season. The first weekend is set to be a tantalising one with several big games.

Gloucester vs Exeter (Friday 1st September)

Newcastle vs Worcester (Friday 1st September)

Wasps vs Sale Sharks (Saturday 2nd September)

Leicester Tigers vs Bath (Sunday 3rd September)

Saracens vs Northampton (Saturday 2nd September)

Harlequins vs London Irish (Saturday 2nd September)

The Leicester Tigers vs Bath match is arguably the biggest fixture of the weekend with particular interest being paid to the fly-half’s of both sides. Freddie Burns moved to Bath at the end of last season from Leicester, with George Ford going in the opposite direction.

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The Clash preview: Bath vs Tigers

Saturday kicks of with ‘The Clash’, the first home match which Bath have held at Twickenham.

It is a massive game for both sides, in particular Bath who relinquished their top 4 place two weeks ago when they lost to Sarries and Tigers beat Saints.

It is also a big occasion for both starting fly-halves who will swap shirts next season, Ford to Tigers and Burns to Bath. It is sure to be a highly competitive area in this match with both teams expected to play expansive attacking rugby, the fly-halves will be essential.

This is a must win game for Bath as they have the harder run-in, lose this and Tigers are favourites for that final top 4 place

Bath: Watson; Rokoduguni, Joseph, Tapuai, Banahan; Ford (co-capt), Fotuali’i; Catt, Batty, Palma-Newport, Ewels, Stooke, Ellis, Louw (co-capt), Faletau

Replacements: Brooker, Obano, Knight, Denton, Mercer, Cook, Priestland, Homer.

Leicester: Veainu; Thompstone, Tait, Mermoz, Pietersen; Burns, B Youngs; Genge, T Youngs (c), Cole, Barrow, Kitchener, Fitzgerald, O’Connor, Hamilton

Replacements: McGuigan, Rizzo, Balmain, Williams, Thacker, White, Williams, Roberts.

Referee: J P Doyle

Prediction- Tigers win