Maddocks: “We will go out there and do the best we possibly can”

31 July 2014

For many of the Bath Rugby youngsters on show in the Premiership Rugby 7s, their Kingsholm reception will be a baptism of fire.

Bath's ancient rivalry with reigning Premiership Rugby 7s champions Gloucester Rugby will be renewed tonight at Kingsholm when the two sides go head-to-head in the final Pool B match.

Bath Academy coach – and head coach on the night – Barry Maddocks expects The Shed faithful to give his young charges a typical West Country derby welcome from the start of the evening.

And he is hoping to see the fresh-faced squad, which will be captained by Chris Cook and includes Junior World Championship winner Tom Woolstencroft, stand up to the challenge.

"We will go out there and do the best we possibly can for the Club but it's important to get the balance right and give some of the younger academy guys the opportunity to experience a decent crowd at Kingsholm.

"I am leading this young group on Thursday so it is quite an exciting opportunity, really. They are a young group of players, but they are a talented bunch. There is a lot of belief in nurturing talent within the Club.

"I think players such as Max Clark – he has toured South Africa with England U18s – and Rory Jennings and Will Homer are very promising lads that the Club is quite excited about. Then we have got a couple of the older lads, like Richard Lane, who can add that experience."

Maddocks himself is not short of 7s experience, having coached the England Women's side for four years.

And with a background at Hartpury College – Gloucester's breeding ground for young talent – he should have some inside knowledge of the hosts.

"I probably know quite a bit about Callum Braley and one or two of the other boys," Maddocks added. "I've worked with them since they were 16 so I have got a bit of an eye in knowing what they are like.

"And I have been fortunate enough as head coach of the England Women since 2009. I've tried to pass on as much as I possibly can to the boys, and we're really looking forward to it."

There are still tickets available from the Gloucester Ticket Office on 0871 871 8781, but if you can't make it to Kingsholm all of tonight's action is live on BT Sport, and we'll also be tweeting live updates from @bathrugby, so make sure you tune in!

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