Friday, 31 August 2012

Bath team to face Worcester

15. Nick Abendanon

14. Tom Biggs

13. Dan Hipkiss

12. Matt Banahan

11. Kyle Eastmond

10. Olly Barkley

9. Michael Claassens

1. Paul James

2. Lee Mears

3. David Wilson

4. Stuart Hooper ( c )

5. Dominic Day

6. Carl Fearns

7. Francois Louw

8. Ben Skirving


16. Ross Batty

17. Nathan Catt

18. Kane Palma-Newport

19. Dave Attwood

20. Will Skuse

21. Mark McMillan

22. Ollie Devoto

23. Jack Cuthbert

Bath Rugby's Olly Barkley: We're buying into new ideas

Olly Barkley believes Bath Rugby's squad have all bought into the ideas instilled by Gary Gold and his new coaching team.

The summer departure of former director of rugby Sir Ian McGeeghan saw a radical overhaul of the club's coaching structure, with Martin Haag also exiting The Rec.

Former South Africa assistant boss Gold was appointed as head coach after a stint with Newcastle Falcons. Mike Ford, Toby Booth and Neal Hatley also arrived, with only Brad Davis retained from the previous regime.

And Barkley says the new coaching structure has had an immediate impact on the squad's mentality.

"There are a lot of coaches but they are all working towards a common goal," said Barkley, who shone at fly-half by scoring 21 points during Bath's final pre-season friendly win over Cardiff Blues at The Rec last Friday.


Bath Rugby flanker Francois Louw is prepared to wait for highs

Success must not be expected overnight as Bath Rugby look to reclaim their past glories in 2012-13.

That is the opinion of flanker Francois Louw, who was one of few players to come out with any credit following a disappointing previous campaign at The Rec.

• •
The obvious goal is to improve on last term's eighth-place Aviva Premiership finish and earn a return to the Heineken Cup, which Bath were knocked out of at the pool stage last term.

But South African Louw says fans must be patient if they want Bath to be at the forefront of competitions both at home and on the continent under the stewardship of Gary Gold.

"We finished really low down on the log last year, below the standard of what Bath Rugby are," said Louw, who was recalled to the South Africa squad yesterday for the clashes down under against Australia and New Zealand on September 8 and 15 respectively.


Webber out until 2013

Bath's Rob Webber could be out of action until the New Year after undergoing a second shoulder operation although there is better news for Stephen Donald.

The club's summer signing from Wasps has not played since March after tearing his rotator cuff muscle during England's Six Nations win over France.

Webber's injury was not expected to be a major concern for Bath, however, his surgery has now been confirmed meaning he will miss the opening months of the new campaign.


Thursday, 30 August 2012

This weeks Chronicle articles on Bath Rugby

After arriving with sky-high expectations about his ability, Stephen Donald believes he was an easy target for criticism following Bath Rugby's disappointing 2011-12 campaign.

Having already agreed a switch to The Rec, the New Zealand fly- half kicked the winning points during his country's World Cup final triumph over France last November, sending his nation into euphoria and whetting the appetite of every rugby fan in Britain.

The 28-year-old failed to lift an already struggling Bath side upon his arrival, however, and Donald's detractors were quick to point a finger in his direction.

But he refuses to let it affect him and is starting to feel right at home with a full pre-season with the club under his belt.

"There was a lot going on last year," said Donald, who has won 28 caps for the All Blacks.

"Probably as a team we weren't where we needed to be and I was obviously singled out by a few people as one of the guys who didn't perform well.

Read the articles now...

New scrum calling system 2012

Here is an example of the new scrum calling system to be trialed in the Aviva Premiership in 2012, with Bath and Bristol Rugby!

Wednesday, 29 August 2012

Last chance to join Bath Rugby Inside Out in the official Aviva Premiership Prediction game

Come join the official 'Bath Rugby Inside Out' Premiership prediction game on SuperBru! It's free and loads of fun. Just click here:

Click here to join...

Pool name: Bath Rugby Inside Out
Pool code: clubgrew

Louw added to Springboks squad

Francois Louw has been called up to the South Africa squad currently playing in the Rugby Championship.

The squad of 28 for Tests against Australia in Perth (September 8th) and New Zealand in Dunedin (September 15th), was finalised on Wednesday.

Also added are DHL Western Province No 8 Duane Vermeulen, Toyota Free State Cheetahs flyhalf Johan Goosen and DHL Western Province midfielder Juan de Jongh.

 "We were not happy with our performance in Mendoza and we are making no excuses for what happened there, but we take full responsibility and have to look forward and get ready for our next tough match, against Australia in Perth," said Springbok Head Coach Heyneke Meyer.


Tuesday, 28 August 2012

Hooper eager to set the record straight

Bath have won just two trophies in 14 years and skipper Stuart Hooper insists the expectation within the team to address such a record this season is at an all-time high.

After finishing in the top four of the Aviva Premiership for three straight seasons between 2008 and 2010, Bath finished outside it for second time running last term.
Not only that, their finish of eighth was their worst since 2007 while they failed to make it out of the Heineken Cup pool stages and lost in the semi-finals of the LV= Cup.

That equated to another year without a trophy and prompted a raft of changes to the backroom staff with Sir Ian McGeechan moving on from his role as director of rugby.

In have come Gary Gold from Newcastle, who will act as head coach at the Rec, and Toby Booth from London Irish, who will act as one of three first team coaches.


Sunday, 26 August 2012

BATH RUGBY: Gold invested in Bath’s future

BATH head coach Gary Gold is convinced there is no danger of the new chapter in the club’s history being haunted by the ghosts of the past.

Gold’s new coaching set-up, which includes former London Irish chief Toby Booth, ex-England defence guru Mike Ford, scrum specialist Neal Hatley and skills man Brad Davis, the sole survivor from the previous regime led by Sir Ian McGeechan, faces its first competitive test at Worcester Warriors in their Aviva Premiership opener on September 1.

The South African’s regime has been charged with revitalising the fortunes of English rugby’s fallen giants after a disappointing 2011-12 campaign, which saw them win just nine of 22 league games and fail to qualify for this season’s Heineken Cup.


Premiership team-by-team guide


Last season 8th

Players in Paul James (Ospreys), Rob Webber (Wasps), Dominic Day (Scarlets), Horacio Agulla (Leicester). Out: Matt Carraro (Montpellier), Duncan Bell (Clifton), Andy Beattie, Lewis Moody, David Flatman, Pieter Dixon, Scott Hobson (all retired).

Form An awful lot of greybeard knowhow has departed from the pack – or is it that dead wood has been cut out? A stellar coaching panel led by Gary Gold must uncover the hard edge Bath have lacked for a decade, though there is a ripple of flair from full-back Nick Abendanon through to flanker Carl Fearns.

Key player Francois Louw, back row.

Prediction If the planets align, top six beckons.

Read about the rest...

Saturday, 25 August 2012

Barkley haul helps Bath beat Blues in final friendly

Olly Barkley scored 21 points as Bath Rugby signed off the pre-season campaign with victory over Cardiff Blues at The Rec.

After an early penalty miss the fly-half grabbed the games' opening try and then produced a faultless display with the boot, landing six consecutive kicks to help Bath make it three wins from three in their summer friendlies.

Alex Cuthbert's touchdown had given the Blues hope as they trailed by just five points at half-time but Bath upped the ante after the break and Jack Cuthbert sealed the win with a late try.

Barkley missed out on the chance to give Bath the perfect start to the contest when his penalty from out wide on the left sailed past the posts after just two minutes.

A change in tactics proved dividends, however, with the fly-half opting to kick for the line the next time Cardiff infringed. The resulting lineout led to another much simpler attempt in front of the posts, allowing the hosts to put the first points on the board.


Thursday, 23 August 2012

Bath Rugby and Bath United teams for double header...

Bath United side to face Llandovery

15. Sam Vesty; 14. Ben Loosmore, 13. Ben Mosses, 12. Ben Williams, 11. Alex Brown; 10. Craig Ronaldson, 9. Mark McMillan; 1. Charlie Beech, 2. Will Tanner, 3. Adam Jamieson, 4. Will Spencer, 5. Jake Oldaker, 6. Guy Mercer, 7. Joe Buckle, 8. Josh Ovens


16. Jake Fields, 17. Tom Dunn, 18. Tom Vaughan-Edwards, 19. Sam Lewis, 20. James Bloxham, 21. Freddie Clarke, 22. Tom Baldwin, 23. George Drury, 24. Ed Hainsworth, 25. Oliver Evans, 26. Freddie Gabbitas

Bath Rugby side to face Cardiff Blues

15. Nick Abendanon; 14. Tom Biggs, 13. Dan Hipkiss, 12. Matt Banahan, 11. Kyle Eastmond; 10. Olly Barkley, 9. Michael Claassens; 1. Paul James, 2. Lee Mears, 3. David Wilson, 4. Stuart Hooper ( c ), 5. Dominic Day, 6. Carl Fearns, 7. Francois Louw, 8. Ben Skirving


16. Ross Batty, 17. Nathan Catt, 18. Kane Palma-Newport, 19. Dave Attwood, 20. Will Skuse, 21. Chris Cook, 22. Ollie Devoto, 23. Olly Woodburn, 24. Jack Cuthbert

Saturday, 11 August 2012

Heathcote injury mars Bath's friendly victory over Welsh

A severe-looking knee injury to Tom Heathcote overshadowed Bath Rugby’s victory over London Welsh at The Rec in their first pre-season friendly of the summer.

The fly-half limped off after just 20 minutes after damaging his knee in a heavy fall after a tackle. And, despite the fragmented nature of his selection and the match, new head coach Gary Gold will have further headaches when analysing his side’s defensive capabilities after shipping such a large total against a newly-promoted side.
Heathcote had looked impressive up to his departure, kicking all of the hosts’ points after landing with each of his three penalty attempts. Gordon Ross cancelled out the Bath fly-half’s first kick but Heathcote responded with two more of his own.



'Bath Rugby Inside Out' Facebook page

Tom Bradshaw: Plot thickens in Bath Rugby's new chapter

With the first missiles of the pre-season phoney war due to be fired on Saturday, what is the mood that permeates the Bath Rugby camp on the eve of a fresh campaign?

The strapline that has accompanied much of the club's pre-season publicity is 'A New Beginning'. We are still in the first chapter of that new beginning – still on the first page, in fact – but themes and characterisation are already emerging.



'Bath Rugby Inside Out' Facebook page

Bath players are keen to get stuck into this game, says Gold

Bath have named a 33-man squad for their first pre-season friendly against London Welsh at the Recreation Ground today (2.15pm).

It will be the first game under new head coach Gary Gold and his team of staff – and everyone will be looking to make an impression.



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Friday, 10 August 2012

Don't forget to check in...!

First friendly of the season tomorrow and first chance to see Gold's master plan in action...

If your luckly enough to be visiting The Rec tomorrow, don't forget the 'Check in' on the Bath Rugby Inside Out Facebook page.

Click here to visit the Facebook page

Bath team to face London Welsh

15. Jack Cuthbert
14. JJ Kilmartin
13. Dan Hipkiss
12. Matt Banahan
11. Kyle Eastmond
10. Tom Heathcote
9. Chris Cook
1. Charlie Beech
2. Ross Batty
3. Anthony Perenise
4. Dom Day
5. Stuart Hooper (c)
6. Joe Buckle
7. Guy Mercer
8. Ben Skirving


16. Will Tanner
17. Nathan Catt
18. David Wilson
19. Dave Attwood
20. Ryan Caldwell
21. Carl Fearns
22. Tom Baldwin
23. Will Skuse
24. Mark McMillan
25. Ollie Devoto
26. Olly Woodburn
28. Ben Mosses
29. Tom Biggs
30. Nick Abendanon
31. Lee Mears
32. Kane Palma-Newport
33. Will Spencer
34. Michael Claassens


'Bath Rugby Inside Out' Facebook page

New Bath Rugby shirt...

What do you think?


'Bath Rugby Inside Out' Facebook page

Thursday, 9 August 2012

Learning curve or reality check?

The first piece of silverware was delivered to London Irish in the form of the JP Morgan's 7's tournament. The exiles managed to come back from a 23 point deficit in a last second resurrection to snatch the trophy.

Bath showed in their group stage a Kingsholm the potential with a band if Blue, Black and White brother's to demonstrate their worth.

The first two pool matches went much to plan with Bath running out victorious, showing dynamism and strong running. Slick offloading, powerful running and accurate kicking saw them as the only side to win back-to-back wins in the entire contest. When the final bout came against Gloucester positivity was high, but for any team to face the Cherry and Whites in their own coliseum of Kingsholm would be a mighty challenge. This sadly was to become apparent as Bath ran out of legs and Gloucester proved a dominant force running out the victors leading on to the final at the Rec.

Bath with a home advantage seemed the time to show the world they were back ready for a new beginning and prove they are prepared to mix it with the big boys.

Gloucester on the other side of draw with Sarries and Sale to contend with so if Bath wanted to exact revenge the only place would be a final show down. Bath's side left them with the Exile pairing of Welsh and Irish to do battle with.

For Gloucester the superiority of the week before continued sweeping sale to one side, although a tougher harder game ensued Sarries also could not defeat the Cherries.



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Wednesday, 8 August 2012

Next seasons Bath Rugby Home shirt... A sneaky peek!


'Bath Rugby Inside Out' Facebook page

Hooper retains Bath Rugby captaincy

Bath Rugby are very pleased to confirm that Stuart Hooper will continue to captain the side for the forthcoming season.

An injury ravaged season limited the Exeter-born lock to just 13 appearances in the Blue, Black and White in 2011/12, but following a typically dedicated and determined rehabilitation and pre-season period, new Head Coach Gary Gold had no hesitation in re-selecting Hooper as skipper.

"Stuart is an exemplary leader, both on and off the field." Gold said. "His leadership qualities have been evident to us since the start of pre-season, and obviously to the Club before that, and he is a hugely dedicated professional. He is a strong communicator, a very clever player and his work ethic is outstanding. Possibly most importantly of all, he has the complete respect of all the players and staff here."

West Country to the core (Hooper was born and raised in Devon), the 6' 5" second row joined Bath from Leeds Carnegie four years ago. He has become an integral member of the squad in that time, and embodies the character, pride and determination that comes with pulling on the famous Blue, Black and White shirt.

Speaking about the decision, Stuart said: "I feel an immense amount of pride and honour in being asked by Gary and the coaches to continue as captain this season. As a group we are hugely excited about the season ahead and on a personal level I look forward to fighting for my place in a hugely competitive squad and leading the team into the coming season."

Source: Bath Rugby

Saturday, 4 August 2012

Biggs left wanting more after Bath denied at J.P. Morgan 7s

Bath's Tom Biggs conceded London Irish were worthy J.P. Morgan Asset Management Premiership Rugby 7s winners but admitted it was a shame the hosts couldn't give the home faithful more to shout about.

Despite the lure of London 2012 rugby fans came in their thousands to the Rec, with the stadium a sell-out for a star-studded finale to this season's 7s tournament.
It was London Irish - who included England star and player-of-the-tournament Jonathan Joseph in their squad - who ran out eventual winners after seeing off Gloucester 33-28 in the final.


Friday, 3 August 2012

Know your Rugby.... Prove it!!

Come join the official 'Bath Rugby Inside Out' Premiership prediction game on SuperBru! It's free and loads of fun. Just click here:

Click here to join...

Pool name: Bath Rugby Inside Out
Pool code: clubgrew

Thursday, 2 August 2012

Biggs: I was rusty at JP Morgan 7s in Gloucester

Unsurprisingly for a Bath captain playing in front of the Shed, Tom Biggs didn't feel at home in the third leg of the J.P. Morgan Asset Management Premiership Rugby 7s Series last Thursday - but it wasn't entirely down to the home fans' partisan support.

Although Biggs has represented England at 7s, and admits to preferring the abbreviated form of the game over 15s, his return to playing it after a four-year gap left him out of sorts.

But the 27-year-old still stood out as one of the club's star turns at Kingsholm and his two tries helped Bath qualify for the finals this Friday.


Preview of Rugby 7s with Banners - VIDEO

Friday 3rd August sees the Recreation Ground host the J.P. Morgan 7s Series Final and Bath giant Matt Banahan chats to BRtv about what we can expect.

Matt Banahan previews the J.P. Morgan 7s Series Final at the Rec from Bath Rugby on Vimeo.

Wednesday, 1 August 2012

Rugby legend issues Bath challenge to Lewisham kid

WORLD Cup winner Danny Grewcock has laid down the challenge to Lewisham’s Tom Chapman to follow in the footsteps of some of the game’s greats and play for the Bath first team.

Chapman, 18, has traded the Saracens’ academy for life in the West Country to pursue his dream of playing professional rugby while studying at the city’s university.

The Colfe’s School old boy turned out for the first time in the club’s colours at the third round of the J.P. Morgan Asset Management Premiership Rugby 7s Series in Gloucester.


Bath Rugby Squad for J.P. Morgan 7s Finals

1.       Matt Banahan – wing – England/England 7s

2.       Guy Mercer – flanker

3.       Will Skuse – back row – England U20s

4.       Josh Ovens – back row – England U20s

5.       Ollie Devoto – fly half

6.       Ben Mosses - centre – England U18s

7.       Chris Cook – scrum half – England U20s

8.       Tom Chapman – scrum half – England U18s

9.       Tom Biggs – wing – England Saxons/England 7s

10.     Tom Heathcote – fly half – England U20s

11.     JJ Kilmartin - fullback

12.     Olly Woodburn – wing