So with two tough weeks of Champions Cup rugby behind us, we welcome the Premiership which is overloaded with different stories and narratives. With plenty of World Cup winners and finalists returning to their teams, let’s take a look at what Round 5 has in store for us this week.
The fixtures kick-off on Friday and it’s arguably the biggest of the weekend as Bath host Saracens, who are on -22 points after their points deduction.
Saturday there are three games and it will give Northampton a chance to overtake Bristol at the top of the league for a few hours should they win.
Then on Sunday, we see the final two games of the weekend, as the table-topping Bristol Bears host London Irish and then Harlequins take on Gloucester Rugby.
Most Points: 44 — Robert Du Preez (Sale Sharks)
Most Tries: 4 — Ben Earl (Saracens)
Metres Gained: 353 — Charles Piutau (Bristol Bears)
Clean Breaks: 10 — Tom Collins (Northampton Saints)
Defenders Beaten: 21 — Gabriel Ibitoye (Harlequins)
Most Passes: 230 — Jack Maunder (Exeter Chiefs)
Most Tackles: 61 — Jono Ross (Sale Sharks)
Match Of The Weekend:
Bath Rugby vs Saracens
Bath Rugby and Saracens resume a rivalry that has captivated in recent times. The pair duelled for the title at Twickenham in 2015, with Saracens emerging victorious, but the Londoners’ record in Somerset is surprisingly average. Their last victory came in April 2016, with Bath edging their last three encounters on home soil.
Bath’s away record leaves a lot to be desired, but the Recreation Ground is once again proving to be an intimidating venue to visit. Exeter Chiefs and Northampton Saints have already fallen on their swords there, while returning World Cup stars Jonathan Joseph and Anthony Watson will no doubt add extra punch to their backline.
* Saracens deducted 35 points for breaches to the Salary Cap regulations