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Match Report: London Irish 14 Bath Rugby 45 Match Report: London Irish 14 Bath Rugby 45

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Match Report: London Irish 14 Bath Rugby 45

Alafoti Fa’osiliva and Kyle Eastmond wrapped up the bonus-point victory for Bath Rugby early in the second half as 14-man London Irish remained winless in Aviva Premiership Rugby.

Leroy Houston crossed for Bath in the 15th minute and the Exiles’ afternoon was always going to be a tough one after scrum-half Brendan McKibbin was shown a red card soon after.
 
Devoto – sin-binned along with Fa’osiliva in the first half – touched down Bath’s second try almost immediately, though Scott Steele’s score gave the hosts momentary hope.
 
However, Bath raced out of the traps after the break, Fa’osiliva and Eastmond touching down within minutes of each other.
 
The hosts crashed over a consolation through Fergus Mulchrone but Rhys Priestland and Nikola Matawalu scored their first Bath tries to make the victory even more resounding as it finished 45-14.

Priestland handed his side the lead with a sixth-minute penalty before his opposite number Shane Geraghty missed the opportunity to level things up shortly after.
 
But it took the visitors just 15 minutes to register their first try as Houston bundled the ball over from a maul two metres out from the whitewash.
 
The momentum appeared to swing Irish’s way in the 20th minute when Bath flanker Fa’osiliva was yellow carded for a late tackle and the Exiles were awarded a penalty try.
 
However, replays showed that in the build-up, McKibbin had stamped on Henry Thomas – for which referee Tom Foley brandished a red card and the penalty try was chalked off.
 
Bath seized the opportunity almost immediately after as Devoto crossed for the second try of the match, converted by Priestland.
 
But with both sides still down to 14 men – Fa’osiliva still in the bin – replacement Steele scored within five minutes of his arrival and Geraghty converted, to cut the deficit down to ten points.
 
Priestland was then off-target with a penalty for the visitors, and Devoto was sin-binned seven minutes before the break for a late shoulder charge on Geraghty.
 
Fa’osiliva’s effort came after a well-worked passage of play put him in place to score from five metres out, before Semesa Rokoduguni burst down the right wing to neatly offload to Eastmond. Priestland kicked both conversions.
 
Mulchrone barreled over courtesy of a maul close to Bath’s try-line and after a lull in play, Priestland reignited proceedings ten minutes from full-time with his try after a strong diagonal run.
 
With George Ford now on the pitch, kicking duties were restored to the England fly-half and he did not miss the conversion.
 
There was a further try when Asaeli Tikoirotuma failed to deal with Rokoduguni's chipped kick and Matawalu finished things off, before Ford scored the final two points.

To see all of the 2015-16 Aviva Premiership Rugby season fixtures, please click here #AvivaPrem
 

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