Wyatt still hungry for euro action
November 6, 2007

Chris Wyatt, whose rugby travels have taken him from Wales to France via Ireland, is poised to add to the 60 Heineken Cup appearances he made for Llanelli Scarlets when Bourgoin contest Pool 2 with the Ospreys, Gloucester Rugby and Ulster Rugby.

The 38-times capped Wales lock's new club travel to Wales for their Round 1 showdown with the Ospreys at the Liberty Stadium on Saturday with a revitalised Wyatt keen to get back into Heineken Cup action.

"I have settled in really well at Bourgoin," said the 32-year-old. "The language has been a bit difficult but they are a great bunch of lads and they've made me feel really welcome.

"The biggest challenge for me was getting back onto the pitch after my back injury and it's been really hard work so I'm looking forward to the opportunity to get back into European rugby.

"Training and playing over here is a completely different world to the one I've been used to before. There is a lot less contact for the forwards and we spend a lot more time on our feet. It's definitely a case of an old dog learning new tricks!

"The attitude towards the role of the forwards over here is totally different and - even at my age - I am learning new skills and techniques and I'm really enjoying it.

"Of course the loss of Olivier Milloud in the front row is obviously a big blow for us. He is an awesome prop and I had been really looking forward to the opportunity to play with him. That said we have more great props who are hungry to play and will seize this opportunity to prove themselves so we will make the most of it.

"Playing a team of the Ospreys' pedigree, particularly with some of their new signings, will be a big challenge. This is a tough group and there will be no easy games. I know Bourgoin's attitude has been questioned in the past but every player in the squad wants to do well in this tournament.

"The Ospreys will no doubt come out with all guns blazing and they certainly have the ability to damage you. I'll certainly be talking to the guys about what I know of the Ospreys but I'd better keep those details under my hat!

"It's difficult to gauge the impact of the World Cup on the Ospreys. It's very difficult for the guys who have underperformed in the World Cup.

"I know as I've been there myself and the first thing you want to do is bounce back and show what you are really capable of.

"The Heineken Cup offers the best opportunity outside of international rugby to test yourself. You've got the big players and the big matches and I think the Ospreys will be keen to take the opportunity to answer all their critics. If anything I think they will be a harder opposition given the current situation.

"There are so many big names in the Heineken Cup this year so it's tough to pick a favourite, but, obviously apart from us, I have to say Leicester are the team to beat. I was surprised, along with a lot of other people, that they didn't win the title last year and they have such a strong squad that they are really the side to watch yet again."

HEINEKEN CUP 2007 / 2008 - (All kick-offs LOCAL times)


Pool 1 Perpignan v Newport Gwent Dragons 21.00 Alan Lewis (I)
Canal+ / Sky Sports***
Pool 2 Ulster Rugby v Gloucester Rugby 20.00 Nigel Owens (W)
Sky Sports
Pool 1 London Irish v Benetton Treviso 15.00 Tim Hayes (W)
Pool 2 Ospreys v Bourgoin 17.30 David Pearson (E)
S4C** / Sport+
Pool 3 Stade Français Paris v Harlequins 14.35 Alain Rolland (I)
Pool 4 Viadana v Biarritz Olympique 14.30 Peter Allan (S)
Pool 5 London Wasps v Munster (Ricoh Arena) 17.30 Malcolm Changleng (S)
Sky Sports / Sport+* / RTE**
Pool 6 Edinburgh v Toulouse 15.30 George Clancey (I)
Sky Sports / FR2
Pool 6 Leinster v Leicester Tigers 13.30 Christophe Berdos (F)
Sky Sports / RTE**
Pool 3 Cardiff Blues v Bristol Rugby 13.00 Peter Fitzgibbon (I)
Sky Sports
Pool 4 Saracens v Glasgow Warriors 15.00 Romain Poite (F)
Pool 5 ASM Clermont v Llanelli Scarlets 16.00 Chris White (E)
FR2 / Sky Sports

* Delayed ** Highlights *** Live via interactive

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