Bath bounce back to thrash 14-man Irish

Date published: November 7 2015

Bath put their recent poor form behind them as they secured a 45-14 victory over London Irish at the Madejski Stadium on Saturday.

Both sides headed in to the game on the back of a poor start to the season, and aiming to make progress towards the top half. 

And it was a dominant display from the visitors that ensured an emphatic win that lifts them up the league ladder. 

Bath took an early lead through Rhys Priestland's early penalty goal, and Priestland was awarded a try by the TMO shortly after following excellent work at the line-out, and he added the conversion to make it 10-0. 

The visitors suffered a setback two minutes later when Alafoti Faosiliva was yellow-carded for a high tackle on Tom Fowlie. The Exiles failed to capitalise on their numerical advantage and were instead reduced to 14 men when Brendan McKibbin received a red card for a stamp on Henry Thomas.

Ollie Devoto added a second try to extend the visitors' lead and Priestland was again on target with the extras to make it plain sailing for Bath. 

But the hosts found a response through Scott Steele, whose try was green-lit by the TMO and converted by Shane Geraghty. 

In the 32nd minute, Bath were issued there second yellow card – Devoto the culprit this time for a late tackle on Geraghty.

The score remained 17-7 until the early stages of the second half, when Faosilva benefited from strong work at the line-out, for Tom Homer to convert for Bath. 

The deficit grew greater in the minutes that followed, as Kyle Eastmond crossed, but Fergus Mulchrone's converted effort stemmed the tide. 

Any hopes of a comeback were dispelled by Priestland, as he added his second try, before Nikola Matawalu added the exclamation mark to an emphatic display by the visitors with another try. 

George Ford converted both scores to ensure a comfortable winning margin for the visitors.

The scorers:

For London Irish:
Tries: Steele, Mulchrone
Cons: Geraghty 2
Red card: McKibbin

For Bath:
Tries: Houston, Devoto, Faosiliva, Eastmond, Priestland, Matawalu
Cons: Priestland 2, Homer 2, Ford 2
Pen: Priestland
Yellow cards: Faosiliva, Devoto

London Irish: 15 Topsy Ojo, 14 Alex Lewington, 13 Tom Fowlie, 12 Fergus Mulchrone, 11 Aseli Tikoirotuma, 10 Shane Geraghty, 9 Brendan McKibbin, 8 Rob McCusker, 7 David Sisi, 6 Tom Guest, 5 Matt Symons, 4 George Skivington (C), 3 Leo Halavatau, 2 David Paice, 1 Tom Smallbone.
Replacements: 16 Gerard Ellis, 17 Tom Court, 18 Halani Aulika, 19 Eoin Sheriff, 20 Luke Narraway, 21 Scott Steele, 22 Chris Noakes, 23 Dom Waldouck
Bath: 15 Tom Homer, 14 Semesa Rokoduguni, 13 Ollie Devoto, 12 Kyle Eastmond, 11 Matt Banahan, 10 Rhys Priestland, 9 Chris Cook, 8 Leroy Houston, 7 Alafoti Faosiliva, 6 Matt Garvey, 5 Dom Day, 4 Stuart Hooper (c), 3 Henry Thomas, 2 Rob Webber, 1 Nick Auterac.
Replacements: 16 Tom Dunn, 17 Nathan Catt, 18 Max Lahiff, 19 Tom Ellis, 20 Max Northcote-Green, 21 Niko Matawalu, 22 George Ford, 23 Jeff Williams.

Referee: Tom Foley