Bath put 50 on brave Exiles

Date published: September 13 2014

Bath scored seven tries in a thrilling high-scoring encounter at The Rec with Premiership newcomers London Welsh, winning 53-26.

Tries from Chris Cook, Semesa Rokoduguni and Jonathan Joseph took the hosts into half-time with a 27-14 lead, although scores by Pete Browne and Seb Stegmann were a significant development from Welsh’s performance in Round One.

But Mike Ford’s men had too much class and Leroy Houston, Joseph, Rokoduguni and Carl Fearns crossed in the second period to ease them to a comfortable triumph.

Seb Jewell and Lachlan McCaffrey went over for the Exiles to gain a spirited try bonus-point, but once again they were defensively exposed.

Following London Welsh’s 52-0 dismantling by Exeter Chiefs last weekend, even accounting for an improvement, a win at a potential title contender seemed a long shot.

And the opening suggested that Welsh were in for another embarrassing afternoon when Cook touched down after just two minutes.

However, despite that setback, Justin Burnell’s men responded soon after through Browne, who powered across the whitewash.

It was certainly a shock for the West Country outfit but they regained their composure and George Ford took them 10-7 ahead via a penalty.

Rokoduguni then went over to increase that advantage before Joseph chipped over the defence and collected to give Bath a 24-7 buffer.

But once again, Welsh refused to cede like they did in round one and Stegmann brought them to within 10 points before another Ford three-pointer made it 27-14 at the break.

The hosts asserted their dominance early in the second 40 as Houston powered across the whitewash before a superb Jewell try kept the visitors in contention.

However, that was effectively extinguished by Rokoduguni who intercepted a stray pass and scampered clear.

McCaffrey gained the Exiles a bonus-point with a fourth touchdown, but scores by Joseph and Fearns gave Bath a dominant win.

The scorers:

For Bath:
Tries: Cook, Rokoduguni 2, Joseph 2, Houston, Fearns
Cons: Ford 6
Pens: Ford 2

For London Welsh:
Tries: Browne, Stegmann, Jewell, McCaffrey
Cons: Barkley 3

Bath:15 Luke Arscott, 14 Semesa Rokoduguni, 13 Jonathan Joseph, 12 Kyle Eastmond, 11 Anthony Watson, 10 George Ford, 9 Chris Cook, 8 Leroy Houston, 7 Guy Mercer, 6 Carl Fearns, 5 Dave Attwood, 4 Stuart Hooper (c), 3 David Wilson, 2 Rob Webber, 1 Paul James.
Replacements: 16 Tom Dunn, 17 Nick Auterac, 18 Henry Thomas, 19 Dominic Day, 20 Alafoti Fa’osiliva, 21 Peter Stringer, 22 Ollie Devoto, 23 Matt Banahan

London Welsh: 15 Seb Jewell, 14 Seb Stegmann, 13 Nic Reynolds, 12 Tim Molenaar, 11 Nick Scott, 10 Olly Barkley (c), 9 Piri Weepu, 8. Ollie Stedman, 7. Richard Thorpe, 6. Lachlan McCaffrey, 5. James Down, 4. Pete Browne, 3. Taione Vea, 2. Nathan Morris, 1. Ricky Reeves.
Replacements: 16 Nathan Vella, 17 Shane Cahill, 18 Jack Gilding, 19 Matt Corker, 20 Ben Pienaar, 21 Rob Lewis, 22 Tristan Roberts, 23 Tom May.

Referee: Matt Carley
Assistant Referees: Ross Campbell, Roger Baileff
TMO: Trevor Fisher