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Match Report: Gloucester Rugby 24 Worcester Warriors 22

31 Oct 2015
Match Report: Gloucester Rugby 24 Worcester Warriors 22

David Humphreys said Worcester Warriors would be a tough nut to crack and he was proven right, as Gloucester Rugby were made to battle for a narrow victory over the Aviva Premiership Rugby new boys at Kingsholm.

Worcester showed their class when they opened their campaign win a victory over Northampton Saints and were close to claiming their second victory in this always close encounter.

But, in the end, Gloucester held on to move into third place in Aviva Premiership Rugby; a much-needed confidence boost after last weekend's narrow home loss to Saracens.

Two tries in the first five minutes set the tone for a pulsating encounter at Kingsholm in which no side could ever be sure of the result at any point.

Gloucester put the pressure on from the kick-off, James Hook kicking a penalty deep into Worcester's 22. Field position duly established, forward momentum carried hooker Richard Hibbard across the line after just three minutes, Billy Twelvetrees missing the conversion.

However, within two minutes Worcester had restored parity when a stray Billy Meakes pass was intercepted by Cooper Vuna, who touched down for a try that fly-half Tom Heathcote neatly converted.

But the hosts were soon back in the game. Willi Heinz thought he'd scored off the back of a Worcester scrum, only for referee Craig Maxwell-Keys to award a penalty that Twelvetrees fired over.

And two minutes later Sione Kalamafoni scored for Gloucester after consultation with the video official, Twelvetrees missing the extras and then adding another penalty to give the Cherry & Whites a double digit advantage.

However, Worcester hit back with ten unanswered points. Ryan Mills's penalty was followed by a try from Niall Annett after the referee had allowed a double throw at the line-out, and the Worcester pack drove Gloucester back across their line, with Heathcote converting.

Twelvetrees made one penalty and clipped the post with another as an end to end first half concluded with Gloucester 19-17 ahead.

But within nine minutes of the restart, Vuna scored his second in front of Gloucester's vocal Shed but Lamb missed the resulting kick.

England winger Jonny May, settling back into club action after his World Cup campaign, was causing constant headaches for Worcester but the home supporters groaned as handling let down their team on some key occasions.

However, David Halaifonua – who enjoyed a stand-out match – scored Gloucester's third try, Hook missing the conversion as their advantage stayed at a narrow two points.

May then thought he'd eased the tension with darting run and score, only for his effort to be chalked off for a forward pass.

Worcester were reduced to 14 men when Nick Schonert saw yellow and they soaked up the resulting pressure and hit on the counter.

After claiming a turnover, Warriors struck deep into Gloucester territory in search of a winning score, only for replacement Darren Barry to throw a forward pass as the try line was in sight.

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

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