Edinburgh 'more than capable' of beating Wasps and setting up possible Glasgow semi-final
Jamie Hodgson has seen enough from Edinburgh this season to convince him they can more than hold their own against English Premiership opposition.
Wasps are the latest raiders from south of the border to take on Mike Blair’s side, and they’ll rock up at the DAM Health Stadium on Saturday to face hosts who saw their unbeaten home record ended by Ulster last weekend.
While disappointed by Edinburgh’s discipline in the Ulster defeat, Hodgson insists they are ready to bounce back and points to their performances this season against English opposition.
Edinburgh finished top of Pool C in the Challenge Cup, beating Saracens and then losing by a single point to London Irish in two tough away games at the start of the campaign. They then demolished Bath 40-19 in the last 16 with a blistering second-half performance.
“We went down to Saracens and put in a really good performance down there,” said Hodgson, the Edinburgh second-row. “We came close against London Irish – it probably wasn’t our best performance of the season but we know that we’re more than capable of beating Premiership sides.
“We beat Wasps home and away two seasons ago so we know what the challenge is.”
History also favours Edinburgh who have won their last six matches at home against Premiership opposition in the Challenge Cup.
Wasps, by contrast, have lost their last three games against Scottish opposition in Europe, having won their previous four.
Edinburgh are unlikely to need any extra incentive but they know that a victory over Wasps sets up the possibility of a semi-final against Glasgow Warriors, which would be the first time the two sides have met in European competition. It would mean back-to-back derbies as the sides are due to meet in the URC on May 21.
Both sides need to negotiate tough Challenge Cup quarter-finals first, with Warriors in France on Saturday night to take on Lyon.
“There’s been whispers here and there saying that we could have Glasgow back-to-back, but we’re concentrating on this week,” said Hodgson. “If we win this game we’re through to a European semi-final, so regardless of who we’re playing – whether that’s Glasgow or Lyon – we’re fully focused on what’s in front of us this weekend.”