Fixtures - Top Bar

Match Reaction: Gloucester Rugby 16 Bath Rugby 39

SamBurgessGloucsBath1005SB14

Bath Rugby may have recorded their largest league win over Gloucester Rugby at Kingsholm but head coach Mike Ford insists his side’s defence was just as vital to their historic triumph.

Matt Garvey grabbed two tries late on to put some gloss on the scoreline but it was a resolute defensive display and the boot of George Ford that ultimately downed their West Country rivals.

The England fly-half scored 24 points in a superb kicking display to ensure his side stole a march on fellow Aviva Premiership Rugby top-four contenders Exeter Chiefs, who lost 18-11 to Sale Sharks on Friday night.

Despite the eventual margin of victory, the hosts were in contention for long periods but never gained the upper hand due to their struggles at the scrum and a resolute Bath defensive effort.

And while Ford admits the hard-fought first hour was perhaps one for the purists, he believes the manner of victory will bode well for his side ahead of a critical run of games.

“It may have been no oil painting for the fans but it was for the coaches and I thought we defended magnificently,” he said.

“There was a spell in the first half where they had 28 phases and then a couple in the second half but each time we took the sting out of their tail.

“We got a couple of late tries, which accelerated the scoreboard a little bit as it was a lot closer than that suggests.

“It’s always tough to win here, especially when you’re Bath but I’m pleased as we’ll have a good Christmas now.

“We’re in a good place and what I like about this squad is that it is a squad effort. There are players not playing who are very good internationals, which is fantastic.

“We’ll have a good Christmas although not a long one because we’ve got Exeter next week but we can’t wait to play that one now.”

Despite Greig Laidlaw kicking the home side into an early lead, Gloucester were behind for most of the contest, not least because of their set-piece woes that saw replacement prop Sila Puafisi sin binned just before the hour.

And while director of rugby David Humphreys acknowledged the defensive prowess of the visitors, he believes his own side were equally culpable in failing to exploit their territory and possession.

“We lost a game by 20 points but it didn’t feel like a 20-point game as I felt we played some good rugby,” he said.

“But credit to Bath as, despite the possession we had, a little bit in the first half but especially in the second half, their defence was outstanding.

“A couple of times decisions went one way and then the other so there was a bit of uncertainty as to who was at fault in the scrum.

“That’s something we will sit down and review over the next couple of days as we’ve got a tough run of games ahead.

“There’s two ways to look at our amount of possession – one is to credit Bath for their defence, particularly when it was in their 22 a lot of the time.

“But we’ve also got to look at being more accurate – to create that number of chances and not score is something we need to review.”
 
Gloucester Rugby: McColl (Halaifonua Tonga 52); Sharples, Purdy (Atkinson 49), Twelvetrees, May; Hook, Laidlaw (Robson 69); Thomas (Wood 46), Hibbard (Dawidiuk 66), Afoa (Puafisi 41), Savage, Palmer (Hudson 55), Kalamafoni, Kvesic, Moriarty (Stooke 65)
 
Sin bin: Puafisi 55
 
Bath Rugby: Watson; Rokoduguni (Burgess 68), Joseph, Eastmond (Devoto 52), Banahan; Ford, Cook (Young 53); James (Auterac 59), Batty (Webber 49), Wilson (Thomas 52), Hooper, Day, Fa’osiliva (Fearns 45), Louw, Houston (Garvey 60)
 
Scorers
 
Gloucester Rugby
Try: Robson
Conversion: Hook
Penalties: Laidlaw 3
 
Bath Rugby
Tries: Penalty, Garvey 2
Conversions: Ford 3
Penalties: Ford 6
 
Referee: Greg Garner
Attendance: 15,780

From 9am on Boxing Day get 20 per cent off a limited number of tickets to the Aviva Premiership Rugby Final 2015. Click this link to take advantage of this great offer

Latest News

Premiership Rugby clubs in Europe live on TV

Aviva Premiership Rugby’s finest return to European Rugby Champions Cup and Challenge Cup action this weekend looking to build on…

tvrelease1111

Freddie Burns ecstatic to have stepped up after Aviva Premiership Rugby Player of the Month award

Freddie Burns’ impressive displays have seen him named Aviva Premiership Rugby Player of the Month for November and the Leicester…

Generated by  IJG JPEG Library

Gloucester Rugby confirm new deal for scrum-half Callum Braley

Ahead of this evening's fixture with La Rochelle, Gloucester Rugby are pleased to confirm the next re-signing for the 2017/18…

Callum Braley

Josh Beaumont backs Sale Sharks’ new boys to shine

Marquee summer signings AJ MacGinty and Josh Charnley are primed and ready to make their presence felt in the second…

Generated by  IJG JPEG Library

Freddie Burns named Aviva Premiership Rugby Player of the Month for November 2016

Leicester Tigers’ outside-half Freddie Burns has “got his strut back” and this has led to him being named Aviva Premiership…

fburns-potm-0812

Match officials for this weekend’s European fixtures

Northampton Saints will face Leinster in a rematch of the memorable 2011 final as the European Rugby Champions Cup returns…

629845781DM00026_Saracens_v

Worcester Warriors ‘unlucky’ in defeat to Wasps, says Ryan Bower

Worcester Warriors prop Ryan Bower admits it was important for his side to put in a performance against Wasps after their humbling Aviva Premiership Rugby defeat…

Photo by Tony Marshall/Getty Images

In-form Henry Purdy desperate to keep improving at Gloucester Rugby

Henry Purdy is refusing to rest on his laurels and has vowed to push on hard, despite praise from all…

Generated by  IJG JPEG Library

Max Clark the centre of attention at Bath Rugby

Back in September – just when Bath Rugby were beginning to count on him in the centres – an ill-timed…

Generated by  IJG JPEG Library

Seven tries success for Exeter Braves over Bath United

Exeter Braves’ Shaun Malton and Levi Davis of Bath United became the first opponents since 2005 to both score hat-tricks…

Generated by  IJG JPEG Library

Worcester Warriors capture Samoa lock Chris Vui

Warriors have completed the signing of versatile Samoa forward Chris Vui till the end of the season. For everything you…

Chris Vui

Wallabies lock Will Skelton joins Saracens

Australian international forward Will Skelton has joined Saracens on a short-term deal. For everything you need to know about Saracens…

Will Skelton

Rowe hails ‘fantastic’ year for Exeter Chiefs

Exeter Rugby Club chairman and chief executive, Tony Rowe OBE, heralded a “fantastic” past year – on and off the…

Exeter Chiefs celebrate

Dan Tuohy joins Bristol Rugby with immediate effect

Dan Tuohy has penned a deal with Bristol Rugby to make the switch to Aviva Premiership Rugby with immediate effect.…

Dan Tuohy

Ally Hogg, Cooper Vuna, Aaron Morris, Lachlan Turner, Bryce Heem and Dan Robson head the Opta Rugby Rankings

Attacks dominated as Newcastle Falcons claimed a dramatic win over Harlequins this weekend in Premiership Rugby but Ally Hogg starred…

allyhogg16sb1111

Premiership Rugby backs Newcastle’s bid for 2018 European Rugby Cup Finals

Premiership Rugby today confirmed its “100% support” for Newcastle’s bid to become host city for European club rugby union's showpiece…

Newcastle Falcons celebrate

Newcastle launches bid for 2018 European Rugby Cup finals

Newcastle is bidding to become the host city for European club rugby union's showpiece weekend in May 2018. The aim…

Newcastle Falcons celebrate

Aviva Premiership Rugby wrap: Round 10

Maro Itoje could not mark his return to a Saracens jersey with a victory – but his director of rugby…

BATH, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 03:  Maro Itoje of  Saracens is tackled by Max Lahiff of Bath during the Aviva Premiership match between Bath Rugby and Saracens at the Recreation Ground on December 3, 2016 in Bath, England.  (Photo by Michael Steele/Getty Images)