Monday, 1 September 2014

Best Bath Rugby news ever...

West Country brewer Bath Ales has come on board as an official partner of Bath Rugby in time for the start of the new season.

The two-year agreement, which starts immediately, is the biggest partnership deal the brewer has ever committed to and signals a significant investment by the business.

As part of the new relationship, Bath Ales’ branding, featuring the award-winning beer brand ‘Gem’, will be included on the team’s shorts throughout the season.
Robin Couling, Managing Director of Bath Ales, said “We’ve always had an interest in Bath Rugby and they’re a great fit with us. As our local team we’ve been supporting them from the stands for many years – and it’s very exciting to be involved in an official capacity now.

“The Rugby World Cup is being held in the UK next year and there will be increased focus on the sport so it’s a great time to get involved and support a local team that is among the elite national and international club sides.

“We’ve got some exciting activation plans in the pipeline so watch this space.”
The West Stand at the Recreation Ground will be Bath Ales branded, and in-stadia advertising and regular product sampling will take place through the season.

Matt Powell, Business Development Director at Bath Rugby, said: “Bath Ales is a successful and growing local business and we’re delighted to welcome them as a partner.
“We share similar values and ethos and look forward to enjoying a long and fruitful relationship with Bath Ales.
“Our partnerships are hugely important to us and we want to work with businesses we can create long, lasting connections with.”

Bath’s first home game of the season will take place Saturday 13th September when Aviva Premiership newcomers, London Welsh, visit the Rec.

Robin added: “We’re putting our full support and commitment behind Bath Rugby and we anticipate a very successful season ahead for this talented side.”


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Friday, 29 August 2014

"Our coaches are top of the league," says Bath Rugby new boy Henry Thomas

Henry Thomas has labelled Bath Rugby’s coaching team as the best in the Aviva Premiership following his arrival at The Rec.

Former King Edward’s schoolboy Thomas has long been expected to make a big impact in England’s front-row and believes a summer switch to his hometown club from Sale Sharks will give him the best chance to fulfil that potential.

Bath’s pack was seen as the fulcrum of their success last season, while Toby Booth and Neal Hatley are amongst the most respected forwards coaches in English rugby.

And tighthead prop Thomas says their dedication to the hard graft up front made it an easy choice to head back to the South West.


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Ford can't wait to see Burgess fly for Bath Rugby

am Burgess is one of rugby league's brightest stars - and in October he'll be downing tools in Australia to travel home and learn a brand new code at Bath.

But head coach Mike Ford says he'd be foolish to curb Burgess' natural instincts as his side aim to make a flying start before their star signing walks through the doors.

And there'll be little time for the 25-year-old, who left Bradford Bulls to join up with South Sydney Rabbitohs in 2010, to catch a breather as the Aviva Premiership will be in full flight.


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Saturday, 23 August 2014

Five try Bath Rugby win away at Jersey

Bath Rugby finished their pre-season campaign with a 10-34 victory over Green King IPA Championship side Jersey.

The visitors scored five tries in all, Jonathan Joseph and Semesa Rokoduguni scoring a brace each, and Olly Woodburn also crossing the whitewash.

It was the home side who drew first blood, fly-half Aaron Penberthy slotting a penalty after four minutes when Bath were judged to have not rolled away from the tackle. The Bath backs were looking lively though, with Rokoduguni, Joseph and Woodburn threatening early on.

Gavin Henson levelled the scores for the visitors just after ten minutes of play, before Joseph went over for his first try of the game. Jersey had been looking to launch an attack of their own, but Rokoduguni's tackle on Jack Burroughs led to a turnover. Chris Cook got the ball quickly away, feeding Joseph who in turn offloaded to Henry Thomas who stormed away. The prop returned the ball to the centre who looped away from the covering defence to score. Henson added the extras, giving Bath a seven point lead. 3-10.

Bath were working hard, keeping a tight leash on the home side and turning possession into attacking chances. The effort paid off again five minutes later, after a speculative chip ahead by Henson was taken superbly in the air by Joseph. The ball travelled quickly through the hands of both backs and forwards, with Henson eventually finding Rokoduguni out wide. The winger blasted past the covering Jersey defence, danced along the touchline and sprinted away to score. 3-15.

Joseph's second try came shortly after. The forwards had forced the turnover from Jersey and scrum-half Cook was on hand to send the ball out at speed. Joseph gathered the ball, drew the two defenders covering him, and slid through the gap to burst away. Henson added the extras, taking the score to 3-22.

Jersey looked to try and get a hold in the game as the first-half played out, but their efforts were thwarted by some stern defence from Bath. The last few minutes saw a series of lineouts for the home side, but they were unable to capitalise on the pressure.

Half-time: Jersey 3 – Bath Rugby 22.

The away side's dominance continued early in the second-half, Leroy Houston forcing his way over from close range. The back row picked the ball up from the base of the scrum and hurtled towards the line. Jersey managed to hold him out the first time, but after attempts from two other Bath players, Houston found his hands back on the ball and he dived over a pile of bodies to score inside the post. Henson was once again on target with the conversion, extending the lead to 3-29.

The home side were intent on finding a way through the Bath defence, and they got their reward after a period of sustained pressure and a scything run from fullback Jack Burroughs led to flanker Nick Haining touching down. Penberthy was accurate from the tee, taking their points tally to 10.

The try spurred the Championship on for the next 20 minutes or so as they frustrated the visitors' attempts to forge any meaningful attacks. Eventually the pressure gave as Man of the Match Joseph found himself in space with Woodburn on his shoulder. The centre shipped the ball wide and Woodburn side-stepped the defender, shifted through the gears to score in the corner. Replacement Richard Lane stepped up for the touchline conversion, but he couldn't quite make the tricky angle.

Jersey kept looking to break the defensive walls Bath had put up, but a final infringement meant that Arscott, having switched to fly-half, could send the ball into touch to end the game and seal the win for the visitors.

Final score: Jersey 10 – Bath Rugby 34.


Friday, 22 August 2014

Bath Rugby team to face Jersey

15. Luke Arscott
14. Semesa Rokoduguni
13. Jonathan Joseph
12. Kyle Eastmond
11. Olly Woodburn
10. Gavin Henson
9. Chris Cook
1. Paul James
2. Rob Webber
3. Henry Thomas
4. Stuart Hooper ( c )
5. Dominic Day
6. Alafoti Fa'osiliva
7. Carl Fearns
8. Leroy Houston


16. Tom Dunn
17. Nick Auterac
18. Kane Palma-Newport
19. Charlie Ewels
20. Guy Mercer
21. Peter Stringer
22. Matt Banahan
23. Richard Lane

The following players will be in shirts with no numbers

Grant Shiells
Juan Pablo Orlandi
Tom Ellis
Dave Sisi
George Wacokeocke

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Ten times the risk but ten times the reward for Bath Rugby owner Bruce Craig

Running a rugby club is ten times harder than running a business – and that’s not my assessment, it’s Bruce Craig’s.

The Bath Rugby owner ran a hugely successful pharmaceutical distribution business before buying the rugby club.

And four years into his ownership, he has some pretty strong views on the differences and similarities between the worlds of business and sport.

All of which is particularly notable in the context of Craig becoming executive chairman of the club from September 1 – a role which will see him take a more active role in running Bath Rugby’s operations.

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Friday, 15 August 2014

Bath Rugby European Rugby Champions Cup fixtures

18th Oct Glasgow Warriors v Bath Rugby - Scotstoun Stadium - kick-off 15.15

25/th Oct Bath Rugby v Toulouse - Recreation Ground - kick-off 15.15

5/6/7 Dec Montpellier v Bath Rugby

12/13/14 Dec Bath Rugby v Montpellier – Recreation Ground

16/17/18 Jan Toulouse v Bath Rugby

23/24/25 Jan Bath Rugby v Glasgow Warriors – Recreation Ground

Quarter-finals: 3/4/5 April 2015
Semi-finals: 17/18/19 April 2015

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Monday, 11 August 2014

Will Genia eyeing up Top 14 move

Will Genia is reportedly going cold on the idea of joining Bath and is instead looking at the Top 14.

Reports in Monday's Midi Olympique say Genia had given a verbal agreement to agree to join Bath and some news outlets in Australia said the deal had been done but fresh reports say Genia is keen to pursue options in the Top 14.

Genia's contract will expire after the 2015 Rugby World Cup and is expected to leave Australia for pastures new. Stade Francais have reportedly made an offer for Genia's services as they look to replace their two ageing scrum-halves - Julien Dupuy, 30, and Jerome Fillol, 36. The French rugby weekly also says usual suspects Toulon and Toulouse could be interested in entering the bidding war.

Source: ESPN

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Friday, 1 August 2014

Bath make 'audacious bid' to sign Will Genia

Bath Rugby are looking to sign Will Genia from the Queensland Reds, having already snared Sam Burgess from National Rugby League club South Sydney Rabbitohs.

ESPN reported in June that Bath had been linked with Genia, but News Corp is now reporting the club have made "an audacious bid" to sign the Wallabies scrum-half and are "now in talks … to lure him to England after next year's World Cup".


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Wednesday, 30 July 2014

Bath Rugby's Temporary Application Approved

Bath Rugby is delighted that B&NES Council has approved the Club's temporary planning application.

This decision enables the Club to increase capacity at the Rec from 12,000 to close to 14,000 for the next two seasons (2014/2015 and 2015/2016) and provide improved facilities for their supporters in the lead up to the Club's 150th Anniversary.

Nick Blofeld, Chief Executive, Bath Rugby said: "We are delighted that our temporary proposals have been approved. As we gear up for a year of special events to celebrate our 150th Anniversary, this extra capacity will allow more people to get closer to the action during a landmark year in our Club's history. We are particularly excited about welcoming new spectators to the Rec, to enjoy the unique experience of watching Bath Rugby play at their spiritual home, and look forward to providing all our supporters, old and new, with a superb couple of seasons ahead, both on and off the field."

Temporary increases in capacity will be made to the existing seasonal East and North stands and more hospitality boxes will be added to the South (IPL) stand.

Bath Rugby remain focused on securing its long-term future at the Rec and this temporary application is separate to the Club's main plans to redevelop their ageing facilities.

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