RUGBY: Will James hopes Edinburgh double-header can turn Gloucester's season around

WILL JAMES insists that the Heineken Cup presents Gloucester Rugby with the ideal chance to get back to winning ways and start to repair their disappointing first half of the season, writes Charlie Talbot-Smith.

The Cherry & Whites have lost their last five games in the Aviva Premiership, including narrow reverses against both Harlequins and Leicester Tigers in the last two weeks, to sit tenth in the table.

But in Europe their hopes of qualifying from Pool 6 are still very much alive ahead of their double-header against Edinburgh over the next two Sundays and James insists they are taking it step by step in a bid to turn their season around.

“This is a key series of games for us over the next week or so,” said James, who is currently out of action with a hamstring tear.

“Our form in the Premiership is there for everyone to see but we are working as hard as we possibly can to turn it around.

“This is a different competition and with a win against Perpignan and a loss to Munster, a game I thought we could have got more out of, we are still in it.

“It is as intense as the Premiership, if not more, but hopefully we will get a chance to express ourselves and if we get two good wins then we can reassess where we are as a team.

“We have not been performing to the best of our ability but this is a different opposition for us to focus on and it should be a great experience. There is all to play for in the Heineken.”

Every match in the Aviva Premiership Rugby Season is crucial, to be there to support your team buy your ticket from premiershiprugby.com/tickets.

Reports from Ireland suggest that Gloucester have agreed a deal to bring the former All Black tighthead prop John Afoa (36 caps) from Ulster to Kingsholm next season.

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