Planet Rugby

Gloucester edge Warriors

08th May 2010 16:53

Share:

Akapusi Qera gloucester worcester

Gloucester's first: Akapusi Qera

Gloucester finished their Guinness Premiership season with a one-point victory over Worcester on Saturday, winning 23-22 at Sixways Stadium.

The result ended the Warriors' six-year stay in the top flight but they nearly snatched a win with the last kick of the game when replacement Willie Walker hit a 22-metre drop-goal against a post.

Worcester rang the changes to the starting line-up for the game from the team which lost at Leeds Carnegie in their do-or-die Premiership relegation clash a fortnight ago.

Gloucester, meanwhile, made one switch from the team which beat London Irish in their last league clash as England number eight Luke Narraway came in for Adam Eustace.

There was another absentee from that Leeds game for Worcester with caretaker coach Andrew Stanley picking the team after the departure of rugby director Mike Ruddock.

And the home side started well as fly-half Joe Carlisle began a good move that led to wing Chris Pennell going over for the first try of the match.

There could have been another when Australian full-back star Chris Latham, playing his final game after a two-year stay, went over only for the try to be ruled out for offside.

But Gloucester took their first chance to get points on the board when Welsh fly-half Nicky Robinson launched over a 35 metre penalty.

And soon the Cherry and Whites took the lead when pressure inside the home 22 saw the ball run loose on the right wing and give flanker Akapusi Qera a run-in down the touchline from 20 metres.

Worcester were unlucky not to get an attacking scrum when Gloucester full-back Olly Morgan fumbled a kick into his 22 over the line and appeared to accidentally touch it down before clearing. But it was not spotted by any of the officials.

Gloucester went further ahead when a clever kick to the corner saw former England wing Lesley Vainikolo just beat the cover for the try.

The Cherry and Whites had the run of possession in the half but Worcester went into the break in front after Robinson threw a pass on halfway only to see centre Alex Grove neatly intercept and race unopposed to the posts, giving Carlisle a simple conversion for a 15-13 scoreline.

But, as both teams rang the changes in the third quarter, the match's intensity waned as Gloucester's handling became haphazard, while Worcester struggled to mount any meaningful attacks.

Carlisle had a penalty chance just after the break but missed, while Robinson's second penalty of the afternoon on the hour put Gloucester into a one-point advantage.

Worcester's one meaningful attack at that stage saw them gain significant possession inside the Gloucester 22 but a strong defence refused to buckle as the move fizzled out.

But the game sparked into life again in the last 10 minutes. Gloucester hooker Scott Lawson looked to have wrapped up the victory as he emerged from a pile of bodies after an attacking line-out win by Narraway for Robinson to convert and produce an eight-point gap.

However, Worcester would not give in and had the visitors struggling in their own 22. Then, after a ruck was turned over on the line, Robinson was caught unable to clear on the dead-ball line. He ran left but was tap-tackled for the ball to run loose and Latham to pounce for the try.

Carlisle's conversion set up a furious finish as Worcester went for only their fifth league win of the season and they nearly snatched it with a drop-goal from Walker only for it to agonisingly hit the post and Gloucester cleared to touch to secure a narrow victory.

The scorers:

For Worcester:
Tries: Pennell, Grove, Latham
Con: Carlisle 2
Pen: Carlisle

For Gloucester:
Tries: Qera, Vainikolo, Lawson
Con: Robinson
Pen: Robinson 2

Worcester: 15 Chris Latham (capt), 14 Chris Pennell, 13 Alex Grove, 12 Dale Rasmussen, 11 Marcel Garvey, 10 Joe Carlisle, 9 Jonny Arr, 8 Kai Horstmann, 7 James Collins, 6 Tom Wood, 5 Craig Gillies, 4 Graham Kitchener, 3 Olivier Sourgens, 2 Aleki Lutui, 1 Adam Black.
Replacements: 16 Callum Black, 17 Chris Fortey, 18 Jack Gilding, 19 Will Bowley, 20 Matt Cox, 21 Louis Silver, 22 Willie Walker, 23 Calum MacRae.

Gloucester: 15 Olly Morgan, 14 James Simpson-Daniel, 13 Mike Tindall (capt), 12 Tim Molenaar, 11 Lesley Vainikolo, 10 Nicky Robinson, 9 Rory Lawson, 8 Luke Narraway, 7 Akapusi Qera, 6 Peter Buxton, 5 Alex Brown, 4 Dave Attwood, 3 Paul Doran-Jones, 2 Scott Lawson, 1 Nick Wood.
Replacements: 16 Olivier Azam, 17 Alasdair Dickinson, 18 Greg Somerville, 19 Will James, 20 Alasdair Strokosch, 21 Jordi Pasqualin, 22 Tim Taylor, 23 Charlie Sharples.

Forthcoming Fixtures
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Top 14
Friday , August 29
Clermont Auvergne vs MontpellierClermont Auvergne vs Montpellier Preview
Saturday , August 30
La Rochelle vs Toulouse14:45
Lyon vs Brive18:30
Oyonnax vs Stade Francais18:30
Castres vs Bay Of Plenty18:30
Grenoble vs Bordeaux-Begles18:30
Racing Metro Paris vs Toulon20:45
More Top 14 fixtures
Currie Cup
Friday , August 29
Pumas vs SharksPumas vs Sharks Preview
Saturday , August 30
Griquas vs Cheetahs15:00
Blue Bulls vs Western Province17:05
Eastern Province Kings vs Lions19:10
More Currie Cup fixtures
ITM Cup
Friday , August 29
Wellington vs ManawatuWellington vs Manawatu Preview
Saturday , August 30
Counties Manukau vs Hawkes Bay14:35
Southland vs Otago17:35
North Harbour vs Waikato19:35
Sunday , August 31
Taranaki vs Bay Of Plenty14:35
Auckland vs Tasman16:35
Wednesday, September 3
Manawatu vs Bay Of Plenty19:35
More ITM Cup fixtures
Recent Results
FixtureDetails
All times are local
ITM Cup
Thursday , August 28
Canterbury 48 - 3 NorthlandCanterbury vs Northland Report
Wednesday, August 27
Waikato 17 - 46 TaranakiWaikato vs Taranaki Report
Sunday , August 24
Manawatu 7 - 35 AucklandManawatu vs Auckland Report
Bay Of Plenty 27 - 56 TasmanBay Of Plenty vs Tasman Report
More ITM Cup results
Rugby Championship
Saturday , August 23
New Zealand 51 - 20 AustraliaNew Zealand vs Australia Report
Argentina 31 - 33 South AfricaArgentina vs South Africa Report
More Rugby Championship results
Top 14
Brive 6 - 21 Clermont AuvergneBrive vs Clermont Auvergne Report
Bayonne 38 - 12 Oyonnax
Bordeaux-Begles 30 - 21 Racing Metro Paris
Stade Francais 23 - 20 Lyon
Toulon 60 - 19 La Rochelle
Montpellier 20 - 17 GrenobleMontpellier vs Grenoble Report
More Top 14 results
Currie Cup
Blue Bulls 30 - 25 Eastern Province KingsBlue Bulls vs Eastern Province Kings Report
Western Province 27 - 14 LionsWestern Province vs Lions Report
Sharks 19 - 16 CheetahsSharks vs Cheetahs Report
More Currie Cup results
ITM Cup
Northland 35 - 5 WellingtonNorthland vs Wellington Report
Counties Manukau 29 - 25 OtagoCounties Manukau vs Otago Report
More ITM Cup results
Top 14
Friday , August 22
Toulouse 35 - 6 CastresToulouse vs Castres Report
More Top 14 results
Currie Cup
Pumas 33 - 15 GriquasPumas vs Griquas Report
More Currie Cup results
ITM Cup
Waikato 27 - 58 CanterburyWaikato vs Canterbury Report
Hawkes Bay 29 - 26 TaranakiHawkes Bay vs Taranaki Report
Thursday , August 21
North Harbour 21 - 25 Southland
Sunday , August 17
Tasman 35 - 15 Hawkes BayTasman vs Hawkes Bay Report
Northland 23 - 28 Manawatu
More ITM Cup results
Rugby Championship
Saturday , August 16
Australia 12 - 12 New ZealandAustralia vs New Zealand Report
More Rugby Championship results
Aviva Premiership Table
PosTeamPPts
1Bath00
2Exeter00
3Gloucester00
4Harlequins00
5Leicester Tigers00