Leicester prop Ellis Genge has sent Bristol a good luck message from the England camp in London ahead of the Bears’ Challenge Cup final in France on Friday night. The Bristolian loosehead was on the books at his native city’s club before switching to Leicester in the middle of the 2015/16 season. 

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He played at Championship level and was initially part of that year’s second-tier title-winning campaign before deciding his future was best served at Welford Road. 

With Leicester having bowed out of the 2019/20 Challenge Cup at the semi-final stage, losing to Toulon in France last month, Genge has now wished Bristol well when they take on the same Top 14 opposition in the decider at Ain-en-Provence. 

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“I don’t hold on to stuff like that. That’s in the past, forgive and forget,” said Genge about his leaving of Bristol. “The only sentiment with me at that club really now it’s obviously a completely different brand. I think there are only three players, four players with Mitch Eadie coming back, in the whole team that I played with.

“I don’t know too many of them that well but I wish them all the best. They have been class all year. They deserve to be in the spot and we didn’t. Best of luck to them. It would be good to see an English club win the title.”

Bristol’s preparations for the final resulted in am 11th-hour selection reshuffle on Friday morning after skipper Steven Luatua was allowed to remain in England with the best wishes of the club after his wife went into labour.

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While Luatua will miss his club’s match due to an impending new arrival, Genge was able to play on last month when he became a first-time father as his son’s birth didn’t directly clash with a Leicester match. He has now said he is enjoying the adjustment to becoming a parent.

“My kid’s on the tit so I don’t have to do too much at the moment. I sort of wake up in the night and my missus is feeding him… I’m sure in a few months I will have a bit of a shock when he is up and about doing bits.”

Switching to England, who are in a three-day camp until Saturday ahead of their October 25 match with the Barbarians, Genge added: “Camp is good. We’re training well, enjoying it. Bit of weights this morning. Nothing too intense. 

“There’s some good work being done. It’s nice to be back in with the boys and life in general, can’t complain. There’s worse s*** going on in the world so not doing too bad.” 

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