Sunday, 7 October 2012

Bath surrender ten-point lead in fifth straight derby defeat

MATCH REPORT: Gloucester 16 Bath Rugby 10

Resurgent Gloucester overturned a ten-point deficit to register their fifth straight West Country derby victory over Bath Rugby.

When All Blacks World Cup winner Stephen Donald ghosted through a non-existent defence for a try after just one minute, Kingsholm was stupefied.

It was not just that Donald try that had Gloucester on the rocks from the off – the Cherry and Whites had no forward power, no phase play – and for the first time they were smashed backwards in the scrum.

The first-up midfield defence continues to pose Gloucester problems, as shown by that soft Donald try.

Nick Abendanon knocked on with the tryline at his mercy after Kyle Eastmond had sneaked in behind James Simpson-Daniel.

Donald’s penalty extended the lead to 10-0, and that’s how it stayed until the half-hour.

Gloucester found something resembling their feet, and Freddie Burns was able to slot two penalties in as many minutes to cut the deficit to four points.

Turning around within a score after a horror-show half, Gloucester will definitely have wiped their brow in relief.

And when the teams returned, Gloucester struck the right chords.

Burns could not convert a penalty chance six minutes into the second period, but the unfazed home side sustained their pressure.

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