Something to see you through to the weekend

The countdown to another thrilling Heineken Cup weekend has been painfully slow today, and with so many mouth-watering clashes in prospect, it can’t come soon enough.

I’ve been trying to imagine which will be the best game.  If Gloucester play like they did last Friday when they secured a bonus point in record-breaking time, we could be in for a thriller tonight as they face the Ospreys.  With the Welshmen fighting for international call ups, they will be out to impress new coach Warren Gatland, but Lesley Vainikolo will not be sympathetic to Gavin Henson’s push for a starting berth and there could be fireworks.

Munster against Clermont Auvergne could be another classic, with the big-spending French outfit travelling to Thomond Park to face an Irish side looking to make amends for last week’s narrow defeat to Wasps.

Biarritz against Saracens and Harlequins versus Cardiff should be close-fought affairs, but Toulouse and Leinster looks to be the showdown of the weekend.  The Irish side were clinical last week against Leicester, with Felipe Contepomi pulling all the right strings, but three-time winners Toulouse in the south of France is one of the toughest trips of all.  The contest between Yannick Jauzion and Brian O’Driscoll should be worth the air fare alone.

Just to kill a few more minutes, have a look at this article for a few Heineken Cup facts and figures.