A free-scoring Thomas Waldrom took his tally to six Aviva Premiership Rugby tries for the season as Exeter Chiefs preserved their superb home record with victory over Gloucester Rugby.
Waldrom scored a quickfire double in the first half to help Exeter motor out of sight, and the No.8's try-line exploits are another timely reminder to England boss Eddie Jones with the Six Nations looming.
As for Exeter, since losing 26-25 to the Cherry and Whites on January 3 last year – Chiefs 100th game in the Premiership – the Devon side have won 14 matches in all competitions at Sandy Park.
And Rob Baxter’s men were never going to let that record slip after recording their seventh win from their opening nine Premiership games.
For Gloucester, who went into the game five games unbeaten in all competitions, it is now just one away win from their last ten league fixtures.
But the visitors only had themselves to blame for an error-strewn first half which the Chiefs took full advantage of.
Gloucester’s decision to play into the wind in the first period came back to haunt them as Chiefs flew out of the traps and their early pressure was rewarded with the first try after six minutes.
James Hook’s clearance was charged down by Julian Salvi and Waldrom had the easy task of dribbling the ball forward and touching down with no Gloucester player in sight.
Gareth Steenson added the extras and it wasn’t long before Chiefs struck again.
After winning a line-out, the home side mounted a 13-man maul which was too powerful for Gloucester to repel and Waldrom bulldozed over for his second try in the space of four minutes. Steenson tried to use the wind to convert, but the ball whistled inches past the sticks.
It was all too easy for title-chasing Chiefs and they ruthlessly punished yet another Gloucester mistake on 25 minutes.
Rob Cook allowed Steenson’s dinked kick to slip from his grasp midway in his own 22 and Olly Woodburn pounced to pile on the visitors’ misery.
Steenson slotted the conversion as Chiefs opened up a seemingly irresistible 19-0 cushion at the interval.
Gloucester finally got their act together after the interval and a penalty from Greig Laidlaw handed them their first points.
But their comeback hopes stalled when an ambitious Hook penalty from a metre inside his own half sailed wide of the posts.
The second half quickly descended into a scrappy affair with a series of scrums affecting the flow of the match.
Gloucester grabbed a consolation try on 72 minutes as Cook shifted the ball out to Charlie Sharples wide on the right and he scampered over.
Billy Burns knocked over the conversion to reduce the deficit to nine points.
But there was to be no grandstand finish as the Chiefs saw the game out.
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