Planet Rugby

Bath make it a perfect six

19th January 2008 16:09

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Joe Maddock of Bath rugby in the ECC

Cleaning Up: A perfect six from six for Bath

Bath made it six straight Challenge Cup wins in Pool One with a hard earned 31-13 win over Auch at The Rec on Saturday.

Having already secured their place in the quarter-finals before this game started Bath were made to work hard by a plucky Auch side. The reality was, at times, Bath played like a side knowing their progression was already guaranteed.

Three tries in the opening thirty minutes from Bath, courtesy of Eliota Fuimaono-Sapolu, Zak Feaunati and Joe Maddock seemed to suggest Bath would coast away. But their French guests had other ideas and fought back with a well-worked try of their own from wing Romain Edmond Samuel.

Feaunati crossed for his second try after the break, securing the bonus-point in the process, but Bath were unable to pull away despite dominating much of the possession. A late Shaun Berne try gave the score line a more honest reflection.

Worcester made it at least two English clubs with a home quarter-final by crushing Bucuresti 46-0 at Sixways.

Coach Mike Ruddock is finding the Guinness Premiership tough but is having no problems in the Challenge Cup, finishing the pool stages with 29 points out of a possible 30.

Prop Matt Mullan scored twice while Rico Gear, Miles Benjamin, Dale Rasmussen, James Brown and Gavin Quinnell all went over in the predictable rout.

Italian side Petrarca secured their first victory of the competition with a 17-5 win at home to Bayonne.

Petrarca led 10-0 at half-time thanks to a try from winger Mike Palefau and full-back Enrico Patrizio added a five-pointer in the second half to hold off a French comeback.

Montauban finished the pool stage with three wins from their six matches after an entertaining 34-17 win at GRAN Parma.

Scotland lock Scott Murray was among the visitors four try-scorers, with Parma fly-half Rima Wakarua providing 12 of his side's points.

Elsewhere, Luke McAlister scored all 14 points as Sale drew with Montpellier at the Stade Yves Du-Manoir in Colombes on Saturday night.

A last-gasp kick at goal almost saw the All Blacks win the game, but after consultation with the TMO, the referee ruled it 'no score' and 'no side'.

The hosts will not be too disappointed with the draw - they progress to the quarter-finals as one of the three best runners-ups.

Finally, Albi sneaked a 26-23 win over Overmach Parma in their dead-rubber at La Maison des Sports.

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