Bristol staring into the abyss

Date published: March 25 2017

Bristol head coach Mark Tainton insisted his team will fight until the end but knows their chances of Premiership survival are slim to none.

Seven points behind Worcester Warriors at the foot of the table, Bristol suffered their 15th defeat of the season at home to Gloucester on Friday.

A tough run-in now awaits Exeter, Wasps and Saracens – who are all competing to win the title – before taking on Newcastle Falcons on the final day.

“It’s where we are, we can’t hide away from it,” Tainton told the Bristol Post.

“We’ve got four games left – three of them against the top three teams in the Premiership, so it’s going to be very difficult to get something from them.

“But speaking to the payers, we’re not going to hide away from the fact; we’re going to try to fight right to the very, very end.

“If we can get a point from some of those games, or two points from some of those games, who knows what’s going to happen come the final week of the season?”

Reflecting on the defeat to Gloucester, Tainton acknowledged that there was no lack of passion or work-rate from Bristol – they just simply weren’t good enough.

“I was immensely proud of the performance from the players tonight – they actually gave everything they had, we were just beaten by a better team,” Tainton said.

“Sometimes you’ve got to put your hand up and admit to that. Gloucester’s defence was solid – for all the possession we had in the first half, and the territory, we never really looked like scoring a try.

“The players gave everything – they played for the shirt and played for the crowd, but we were just not good enough.”