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Wasps will be looking to add to a strong recent record against TOP 14 sides when they travel to Biarritz Olympique in the EPCR Challenge Cup Round of 16 on Friday.
The Gallagher Premiership outfit have won four of their last six matches against TOP 14 teams in European competition (losing two), after winning just two of their previous eight such games (drawing one and losing five).
Biarritz qualified for the knockout stage by finishing third in EPCR Challenge Cup Pool A, while Wasps were third from bottom in Heineken Champions Cup Pool B.
The match kicks off at 18:00 (UK & Irish time) at Parc des Sports Aguilera and is available to stream on epcrugby.tv.
TEAM NEWS 🚨
4️⃣ fiery fixtures under the Friday night lights, who are you pumped to see in action? 🤩#ChallengeCupRugby Ro16 line-ups ➡️ https://t.co/IxwCvdW3CU pic.twitter.com/cNScL34pfK
— EPCR Challenge Cup (@ChallengeCup_) April 14, 2022
Other key facts:
- Biarritz and Wasps have faced each other once previously in the EPCR Challenge Cup, during the quarter-finals of the 2011/12 season, when the French side won 26-23 away to Wasps on their way to lifting the trophy.
- Biarritz have lost three of their last four home games against English sides in the EPCR Challenge Cup (winning one), after winning their previous two; however, each of those three defeats have come by margins of fewer than five points.
- Wasps have lost five of their last six games in the knockout stage of the EPCR Challenge Cup (winning one) after winning each of their previous six such matches. However, they have won two of their three away games in the knockout stage (losing one), including one in France, against Stade Français Paris in 2003.
- Six of Biarritz’s last seven games in the EPCR Challenge Cup have been decided by single-figure margins, the TOP14 side winning three and losing three of those six games.
- Biarritz have scored three tries from counterattacks in the EPCR Challenge Cup this season. Only Lyon (5) have scored more in that fashion.
- Biarritz are the only team to have conceded under one point per 22 entry in the EPCR Challenge Cup this season (0.91); their opponents have managed to score a try from just 14% of their entries into Biarritz’s 22.
- Biarritz are one of just two teams, alongside Worcester Warriors, yet to lose a scrum on their own feed in the EPCR Challenge Cup this season (16/16).
- Wasps’ Alfie Barbeary beat 10 defenders in his two Heineken Champions Cup games this season. His average of five defenders beaten per game remains the best of any forward in the competition this season.
- Steeve Barry (Biarritz) has beaten 15 defenders in the EPCR Challenge Cup this season. Only Taine Basham (20) and Gervais Cordin (17) have beaten more.
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Alfie Barbeary starred with a hat-trick of tries as Wasps saw off a stubborn Biarritz Olympique 39-29 on Friday to reach the EPCR Challenge Cup quarter-finals.
Playing at No 8, the versatile forward went over twice in a first half his side dominated, but they did not seal victory until Barbeary completed his treble on 75 minutes.
Wasps appeared comfortable after reaching half-time 29-8 ahead, but Biarritz had other ideas.
Barbeary’s two tries, plus further scores from Jacob Umaga and Dan Robson, gave Wasps a healthy position at the interval, with Jimmy Gopperth kicking three conversions and a penalty.
A flowing move ⚡
Jacob Umaga collects the pass to score the opening try for @WaspsRugby 🐝
Watch live on on our website ➡️ https://t.co/C53gD8a4m3#ChallengeCupRugby pic.twitter.com/SrJfodWDKx
— EPCR Challenge Cup (@ChallengeCup_) April 15, 2022
Biarritz could only muster a try from Lucas Peyresblanques and a Gilles Bosch penalty in reply.
However, the hosts were a different side in the second period as Mathieu Hirigoyen, Steffon Armitage and Bastien Soury went over to reduce the deficit.
With Bosch converting each of these and Gopperth only adding a penalty for Wasps, it was 32-29 on 68 minutes.
However, Wasps raised their game and Barbeary’s third try, again converted by Gopperth, sealed victory.
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