Bath held off a second-half fightback from Leicester Tigers to claim a hard-fought 27-20 Premiership victory at the Rec on Saturday.
Bath held off a second-half fightback from Leicester Tigers to claim a hard-fought 27-20 Premiership victory at the Recreation Ground on Saturday.
George Ford kicked 14 points claimed a narrow victory, 100 years on from the first game between the two sides.
After Tigers' French scrum-half David Mele had converted an early penalty for the visitors, Ford then kicked the first of his four penalties to level the scores at 3-3.
Bath crossed for the opening try of the game with 21 minutes on the clock, centre Jonathan Joseph intercepting Ryan Lamb's pass before sprinting away to score under the posts.
Another two penalties from Ford extended Bath's lead before a crucial try just before half-time from the home side, with Matt Banahan going over in the corner to give Bath a 21-3 lead at the break.
Eight minutes after half time, Leicester cut the deficit with their first try of the afternoon with a breakaway score from flanker Steve Mafi.
The Tigers scored again after 62 minutes, stretching the Bath defence before Ed Slater crossed the whitewash – the conversion from Mele made the score 21-15 with 18 minutes remaining.
Although Ford kicked another penalty soon after, a third try for Leicester set up a grandstand finish.
Adam Thompstone's inside pass found Vereniki Goneva and the try reduced Bath's lead to 24-20.
But, in the final minute, Ford calmly slotted another penalty from in front of the posts, enabling Bath to continue their strong start to the Aviva Premiership season.
Tries: Joseph, Banahan,
Pens: Ford 5
Tries: Mafi, Slater, Goneva
Yellow cards: Mulipola, Youngs
Bath: 15 Anthony Watson, 14 Semesa Rokoduguni, 13 Jonathan Joseph, 12 Gavin Henson, 11 Matt Banahan, 10 George Ford, 9 Peter Stringer, 8 Leroy Houston, 7 Guy Mercer, 6 Matt Garvey, 5 Dave Attwood, 4 Stuart Hooper (c), 3 David Wilson, 2 Rob Webber, 1 Paul James.
Replacements: 16 Ross Batty, 17 Nathan Catt, 18 Anthony Perenise, 19 Dominic Day, 20 Alafoti Fa'osiliva, 21 Micky Young, 22 Tom Heathcote, 23 Tom Biggs.
Leicester: 15 Niall Morris, 14 Scott Hamilton, 13 Vereniki Goneva, 12 Anthony Allen (c), 11 Adam Thompstone, 10 Ryan Lamb, 9 Dave MÃ©lÃ©, 8 Jordan Crane, 7 Julian Salvi, 6 Steve Mafi, 5 Sebastian de Chaves, 4 Ed Slater, 3 Dan Cole, 2 Tom Youngs, 1 Logovi'i Mulipola.
Replacements: 16 Neil Briggs, 17 Boris Stankovich, 18 Fraser Balmain, 19 Jamie Gibson, 20 Thomas Waldrom, 21 Sam Harrison, 22 Owen Williams, 23 Dan Bowden.
Venue: Recreation Ground
Referee: Gregory Garner
Assistant referees: Paul Burton, Ashley Rowden