Derby win for Bath at Kingsholm

Date published: October 1 2016

Second-half tries from Anthony Watson and Matt Banahan helped Bath secure a 15-6 win over rivals Gloucester at Kingsholm.

With one win from their last five, Gloucester came into this against a Bath side who have started the season strongly despite defeat last week. They had an early chance to go ahead, but Greig Laidlaw missed the opening penalty of the afternoon, in what was one of very few scoreboard threatening moments in the first 40.

The hosts did have the better of the opening exchanges, but failed to make the most of the possession they had around the Bath try line.

George Ford had the first chance for the visitors, but skewed a drop goal attempt wide of the posts as both kickers failed to find their range early on.

It seemed at times as if both sides were battling for scrums rather than points, with the half failing to produce meaningful passages of rugby. Gloucester did finally open the scoring on 31 minutes though, a penalty from James Hook going through from distance and putting the home side three points up.

He looked set to make it a six-point lead, but another huge kick this time didn't carry through the posts, meaning Gloucester went in 3-0 up at the break.

Bath improved early in the second half and drew themselves level through the boot of Ford, his drop goal attempt this time sailing through the sticks. Laidlaw soon restored the three point gap though from a penalty, with Bath level for all of four minutes.

Again it was the turn of Ford next, but his latest penalty flew wide despite having the legs. The second half was by no means a spectacle, but it did produce more points and the first try of the afternoon.

A lineout five metres from the line saw Bath keep the ball and exchange passes, with Tom Homer feeding Watson who found enough space to nip through and ignite what was a dull first hour.

The conversion struck a post, leaving the lead at just a couple of points. Laidlaw's long attempt at putting his side in front landed well short, and Bath sealed the victory late on with try number two.

The visitors had the ascendancy and after forcing the hosts to go behind their own line, grabbed try number two from a reset scrum.

Watson was held up just short, but the ball was fed back out to Banahan who powered through and stopped all hopes of a home win. Ford converted, putting his side 15-6 up and adding the gloss to a hard fought victory.

The scorers:

For Gloucester:
Pens: Hook, Laidlaw

For Bath:
Tries: Watson, Banahan
Con: Ford
Pen: Ford

Gloucester: 15 James Hook, 14 Charlie Sharples, 13 Billy Twelvetrees, 12 Mark Atkinson, 11 Henry Purdy, 10 Billy Burns, 9 Greig Laidlaw (c), 8 Ben Morgan, 7 Jacob Rowan, 6 Ross Moriarty, 5 Mariano Galarza, 4 Tom Savage, 3 John Afoa, 2 Richard Hibbard, 1 Paddy McAllister
Replacements: 16 Darren Dawidiuk, 17 Yann Thomas, 18 Paul Doran-Jones, 19 Joe Latta, 20 Matt Kvesic, 21 Willi Heinz, 22 Matt Scott, 23 David Halaifonua

Bath: 15 Tom Homer, 14 Semesa Rokoduguni, 13 Aled Brew, 12 Matt Banahan, 11 Anthony Watson, 10 George Ford (cc), 9 Kahn Fotuali’i, 8 Leroy Houston, 7 Tom Ellis, 6 Matt Garvey (cc), 5 Elliott Stooke, 4 Charlie Ewels, 3 Henry Thomas, 2 Tom Dunn, 1 Nathan Catt
Replacements: 16 Ross Batty, 17 Nick Auterac, 18 Kane Palma-Newport, 19 Dave Attwood, 20 Zach Mercer, 21 Chris Cook, 22 Rory Jennings, 23 Jeff Williams

Referee: JP Doyle
Assistant Referees: Ross Campbell, Roy Maybank
TMO: David Grashoff