Saints fight back to beat Bath

Date published: April 30 2016

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Northampton recovered from a 0-14 half-time deficit to overcome Bath 15-14 in their Premiership clash at Franklin's Gardens on Saturday.

Two Jeff Williams tries saw Bath into a surprising 0-14 lead at the break. It was wholly against the run of play as the former sevens player pounced on the frailties of the Saints' backline to bag a brace.

Northampton's higher league position showed in the second half as they rallied back. Tries from Teimana Harrison and Mike Haywood got the deficit back to one point before Myler coolly slotted home his conversion attempt to secure victory.

Victory means that the hosts' European hopes remain in their own hands as they now sit six points clear of seventh placed Quins, having played a game more.

Meanwhile Bath's collapse is just another disappointing chapter to their season as they can now only finish ninth.

Out of nothing, Bath had the first try of the match in the tenth minute, Williams pouncing upon the ball after Harry Mallinder slipped to touch down. Rhys Priestland's conversion was successful as the visitors established a seven-point lead.

Williams added his second try in spectacular fashion after 19 minutes. Jonathan Joseph kicked forward a loose ball allowing the former England Sevens man Williams to surge over halfway. He then showed blistering pace to kick it forward and surge onto it to finish. Priestland added the extras to send Bath into an impressive 0-14 lead.

In the 48th minute Bath's Chris Cook was sent to the sin-bin for kicking the ball out of Lee Dickson's hands.

After 56 minutes, Northampton scored their first try. Harrison handed off Matt Banahan to score out wide. Myler missed his conversion to leave the deficit at nine points.

Myler atoned for his error five minutes later, scoring a penalty from in front of the posts to make the score 8-14.

With eight minutes left to play Northampton scored a try that could prove crucial. Haywood broke off the back of a rolling maul to bundle over. This meant that the match would be decided by Myler's conversion attempt, and he was successful.

The scorers:

For Northampton:
Tries:
Harrison, Haywood
Cons: Myler
Pens: Myler

For Bath:
Tries:
Williams 2
Cons: Priestland 2

Northampton: 15 Ben Foden, 14 Ken Pisi, 13 George Pisi, 12 Luther Burrell, 11 George North, 10 Stephen Myler, 9 Lee Dickson (c), 8 Teimana Harrison, 7 Tom Wood, 6 Jamie Gibson, 5 Christian Day, 4 Courtney Lawes, 3 Kieran Brookes, 2 Mikey Haywood, 1 Alex Waller 
Replacements: 16 Reece Marshall, 17 Campese Ma’Afu, 18 Paul Hill, 19 Victor Matfield, 20 Ben Nutley, 21 Kahn Fotuali’i, 22 Jj Hanrahan, 23 Harry Mallinder

Bath: 15 Anthony Watson, 14 Jeff Williams, 13 Jonathan Joseph, 12 Ollie Devoto, 11 Matt Banahan, 10 Rhys Priestland, 9 Chris Cook, 8 David Denton, 7 Francois Louw (c), 6 Matt Garvey, 5 Dave Attwood, 4 Charlie Ewels, 3 David Wilson, 2 Rob Webber, 1 Nathan Catt 
Replacements: 16 Tom Dunn, 17 Nick Auterac, 18 Max Lahiff, 19 Dominic Day, 20 Leroy Houston, 21 Will Homer, 22 George Ford, 23 Max Clark

Referee: Wayne Barnes
Assistant Referees: Paul Burton, Nigel Carrick
TMO: Sean Davey

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