Wing David Lemi proved his credentials on his return to Bristol, according to director of rugby Andy Robinson.
The Samoa international played for Bristol between 2005 and 2009 before leaving to join Wasps.
He re-joined the West Country club this summer from Worcester and scored a try in their 23-19 win over the Warriors in Sunday's Championship opener.
"He's not only popular with the supporters but he's popular within the team," Robinson told BBC Points West.
"As a Samoan captain, he shows great leadership and foresight within the game. It's great we've got him back here."
|Match stats from Ashton Gate|
|Bristol (3) 23|
|Tries: Short, Lemi, Mosses|
|Con: Morgan Pens: Morgan 2|
|Worcester (10) 19|
|Con: Mieres Pens: Mieres 4|
Lemi was joined on the score-sheet by fellow ex-Warriors player Andy Short, who touched down the first try for Bristol in the second half.
Robinson added: "It was the two ex-Worcester players who scored tries today. They were keen to put in good performances and that was shown throughout the game."
It was the first time Bristol had played at their new Ashton Gate home, which they share with Bristol City, and the game attracted 8,500 supporters.
And the hosts secured victory in style, having come from 10-3 down at half-time to defeat their former Premiership rivals with an 80th-minute try from Ben Mosses.
"It has no significance on whether we go up into the Premiership but what it does is that it gives us a great start," added Robinson, who led the team to the play-off final last season.
"It gives us a start in the table, as we try to get into the top four.
"I've been on the losing side in a couple of those occasions and we've won a few like that. You've got to take those when it happens and it was brilliant we were able to finish it off in the way we did."