Sharples urges Gloucester charge

Charlie SharplesGloucester winger Charlie Sharples admits facing Brive in Thursday’s Rugby Challenge Cup clash is a step into the unknown but he wants his team-mates to hit them hard (Gloucester 7/2 joint-favourites – Tournament Outright).

The Cherry and Whites are set to kick off this season’s European campaign when the struggling French side arrive at Kingsholm later this week.

The Top 14 outfit have yet to hit the heights this term and have won just three games all season, while Gloucester are sitting sixth in the Aviva Premiership standings with 15 points from six games played.

The South West club did lose to Saracens 28-21 at the weekend but the fact they came within seven points of matching the title favourites will have given them a slight boost (Saracens 13/8 – Regular Season Winner).

Attention now turns to the European game and the visit of Nicolas Godignon’s charges, and Sharples wants his side to hit the ground running when they take on the 1997 Heineken Cup winners.

“It’s a short turnaround and we don’t know what kind of team Brive will come with on a Thursday night,” he said.

“We have a couple of days of rest and recovery, it will be a totally different challenge and we just have to come out all guns blazing at Kingsholm.”

Gloucester will also square off with Italian club Zebre and French outfit Oyonnax both home and away, with the five pool winners and the three best runners-up set to advance to the quarter-finals.

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