Friday, 30 November 2012

Bath Rugby team to face Leicester Tigers

15 Nick Abendanon
14 Kyle Eastmond
13 Horacio Agulla
12 Matt Banahan
11 Tom Biggs
10 Stephen Donald
9 Michael Claassens
1 Paul James
2 Lee Mears
3 Anthony Perenise
4 Stuart Hooper ( c )
5 Dave Attwood
6 Francois Louw
7 Guy Mercer
8 Simon Taylor


16 Brett Sharman
17 Charlie Beech
18 Kane Palma-Newport
19 Dominic Day
20 Josh Ovens
21 Mark McMillan
22 Tom Heathcote
23 Jack Cuthbert

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Rugby stadium comes step closer as new way forward for The Rec backed

A proposal which would pave the way for Bath Rugby to build a new, bigger stadium on the Rec was backed by councillors at a meeting last night.

The Board of Trustees of the Recreation Ground met at the Guildhall to discuss a draft scheme which will be officially put forward by the Charity Commission to end the long-running dispute over the use of the city centre site.

It would allow the trust to grant a new lease to Bath Rugby, which would give them a greater portion of the Rec in exchange for what was the club’s Lambridge training ground.


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Thursday, 29 November 2012


At today's (29th Nov 2012) meeting of the Bath Recreation Ground Trust Board the Trustees endorsed the Charity Commission Draft Scheme for the Rec. The Committee of the Real Friends of the Rec (RFOTR) is delighted that this key milestone has been reached and we are sure that all RFOTR members will feel the same.

The Scheme is a legal order published by the Charity Commission that enables the Rec Trust to move ahead with key new changes on how the Rec is used. The final stage in the process for the implementation of the Scheme is the 28-day period during which responses on the Draft Scheme can be submitted to the Charity Commission. This process starts on November 30th 2012. There is no fixed format for responses, but we understand that the Charity Commission is looking for 'substantive' responses from those who are users or potential users of the Rec. A user can be someone participating in sports and events on the Rec, spectators at sports (e.g. Rugby) or events on the Rec, etc. It is important that as many members of the RFOTR send in responses to the Charity Commission as soon as possible. You can go to the Charity Commission website ( where you can respond online, and also find information about how to respond in writing.

Clearly members will determine the form of their own responses, but listed below are some of the key points about the Scheme that the Committee of the RFOTR regard as important:

1. The Charity Commission (CC) Scheme resolves two of the long standing discrepancies with the objectives of the Rec Trust: the lease to Bath Rugby as a commercial organisation, and the presence of the Leisure Centre on land that is not an open space. The resolution of these two issues will enable a sound financial future for the Trust, as well as providing a sound future for both the Leisure Centre and Bath Rugby. We see this as extremely important for all users of the Rec, whether they are participating in sports held on the Rec, attendees at Bath Rugby matches, or users of the Leisure Centre. If the Scheme were not implemented and Bath Rugby were to leave the Rec the likelihood is that the Rec Trust would become financially insolvent with a huge negative impact on the users of the Rec.

2. The offer of the Rugby Club to provide its Lambridge Training Ground as compensation for the additional land that it will occupy at the Rec is an excellent arrangement for all parties; the beneficiaries and users of the Rec, the Rec Trust and Bath Rugby. As pointed out in the brochure provided by the Trust (see link below) the amount of land held by the Trust increases by 73%. We would hope that this will increase participation on all land held by the Rec Trust with more sports now able to make use of the additional land held by the Trust.

3. The key points of this Scheme has already received overwhelming public support in the consultation held in June 2011 with 85% of the respondents Strongly Agreeing or Agreeing with the proposal.

4. A key aim of the RFOTR has been to see redevelopment on the Rec that will provide a first-class venue for 'All Sports for All People'. The fact that the CC Scheme enables Bath Rugby to develop a three-sided arena, with a temporary stand on the east-side during the rugby playing season, giving a 17,000-18,000 person capacity is a huge benefit for the citizens of Bath and its environs. Access will be available to this facility during the summer months with the possibility of cricket, other sports, as well as public events such as concerts etc. This should enable a significant increase in the overall usage of the Rec.

5. Bath is a World Heritage City. The CC Scheme at last enables first-class facilities to be developed on the Rec in contrast to the 3rd rate and dilapidated structures that exist today. New facilities on the Rec hosting Premiership Rugby and other sporting events would be visited by, and seen by many across the UK and worldwide. This would provide excellent PR and wonderful promotion for our World Heritage City. Additionally the significant commercial benefit to the City of Bath would be further increased by these sporting events being held in new first-class facilities.

6. The RFOTR Committee is very pleased to see that the Rec Trust has endorsed the CC Scheme, and is fully supportive of the Scheme. We hope that the CC will adopt the Scheme as soon as possible.

More information about the Scheme, including an electronic version of an explanatory booklet, will be available on the Rec Trust website at The brochure is an excellent document - do read it!


You can contact the Executive Committee via email at

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Will Lancaster re-discover his faith?

Has the day finally dawned where Bath's pocket rocket Tom Biggs gets to don the white of England and sport the Red Rose for his country?

The avid fans at Bath have been championing Biggs to take a role on the wing for England, and now with his call up to Pennyhill could see this finally come true. When Biggs joined from Falcons the Bath supporters realised Bath had signed a very talented player and have been wondering when his full English call up would come. This season especially has seen a huge turn in form from Biggs, not just his pace but showing there's more to his game than just a speedster. The best way to describe him is a well rounded wingers who punches well above his weight, no matter the shape or size he will hit a tackle with a force that would stop majority of players, many of which have been try savers.

It was Lancaster who initially spotted the talents of Biggs taking him into the academy at Leeds, and sending him on the road to the player he is now. So does he still see enough in him to release him on the international stage, and what a baptism of fire squaring up against the All blacks.


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Tuesday, 27 November 2012

Two new signings for Bath Rugby!

Bath Rugby have bolstered their pack with the signings of Eusebio Guinazu and Mat Gilbert, it was announced today.
Guinazu, who covers both hooker and prop, has a wealth of experience, having played club rugby in both the northern and southern hemispheres as well as representing his native Argentina over 25 times to date. His most recent appearances with the Pumas came in this year's Autumn Internationals. He will officially join the Club in a couple of weeks, with his contract running until 2014.
Back-row Gilbert, who was born in England, arrives at the Club as injury cover until the end of the season. He made his name at Scarlets, making 15 appearances for the Welsh province, before moving to Mogliano. He has also won 11 caps for the England Deaf rugby team.
Commenting on the news, Bath Head Coach, Gary Gold, said: "Both Eusebio and Mat will be great additions to the squad we have here. Eusebio has a huge amount of experience which will be a great benefit to us, whilst Matt is a special young talent with a lot to offer the game. They are great guys, will fit in well, and we're looking forward to them joining us."
Source: Bath Rugby
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Sunday, 25 November 2012

Biggs called up to England squad

Bath Rugby wing Tom Biggs has been called up to the England training squad this evening ahead of the final QBE international against New Zealand on Saturday.

Biggs replaces Ugo Monye, who remains at Harlequins for treatment on a calf injury.


Mouritz Botha (Saracens)
Dan Cole (Leicester Tigers)
Alex Corbisiero (London Irish)
James Haskell (London Wasps)
Phil Dowson (Northampton Saints)
Dylan Hartley (Northampton Saints)
Tom Johnson (Exeter Chiefs)
Courtney Lawes (Northampton Saints)
Ben Morgan (Gloucester Rugby)
Tom Palmer (London Wasps)
Geoff Parling (Leicester Tigers)
David Paice (London Irish)
Chris Robshaw (Harlequins, capt)
George Robson (Harlequins)
Mako Vunipola (Saracens)
Thomas Waldrom (Leicester Tigers)
David Wilson (Bath Rugby)
Nick Wood (Gloucester Rugby)
Tom Wood (Northampton Saints)
Tom Youngs (Leicester Tigers)

BACKS (14)

Chris Ashton (Saracens)
Brad Barritt (Saracens)
Tom Biggs (Bath Rugby)
Mike Brown (Harlequins)
Freddie Burns (Gloucester Rugby)
Danny Care (Harlequins)
Lee Dickson (Northampton Saints)
Owen Farrell (Saracens)
Toby Flood (Leicester Tigers)
Alex Goode (Saracens)
Jonathan Joseph (London Irish)
Charlie Sharples (Gloucester Rugby)
Manusamoa Tuilagi (Leicester Tigers)
Ben Youngs (Leicester Tigers)

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Booth buoyed by Donald display

Bath first-team coach Toby Booth paid tribute to Stephen Donald's coolness after the All Black fly-half booted his side to a 21-18 win over Aviva Premiership leaders Harlequins at the Recreation Ground.

Donald turned in his best performance for Bath by kicking seven penalties from eight attempts but it was nip and tuck all the way through against fellow New Zealander Nick Evans, whose boot was also responsible for all his side's points.

Booth said: "The one thing about Stephen Donald is that he will never shy away from responsibility. He was very, very good tonight and showed his worth to the team. That has been very well received by fans and coaches and players alike.


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Saturday, 24 November 2012

Fired-up Matt Banahan looking to win new Bath Rugby deal

Fit-again Matt Banahan is fired up to secure a new contract with Bath Rugby after putting an early-season knee injury behind him.
The centre/wing is in pursuit of the kind of form that saw him score 16 tries in his debut season as he – like a clutch of out-of-contract Bath players – seek to nail a spot in head coach Gary Gold's plans for the 2013-14 campaign.

An injury sustained against Wasps in just the second week of the Premiership frustrated Banahan's bid to register on England coach Stuart Lancaster's radar ahead of the autumn internationals. But following a return to action against London Welsh in the Premiership on November 4 and two subsequent LV= Cup matches, Banahan feels well-placed to kick on.


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MATCH REPORT: Bath Rugby 21 Harlequins 18

Stephen Donald helped himself to all of Bath Rugby's points as Aviva Premiership champions Harlequins were defeated at The Rec tonight.

The World Cup-winning fly-half booted seven penalties to fellow Kiwi Nick Evans' six for Quins, who were denied the chance to pull clear of Saracens at the top of the table.

Donald kicked Bath into a 9-6 interval lead after Evans had twice put the visitors ahead and was on target four more times in the second period.

It was the second tryless contest between the sides in the space of eight days, following Quins' 21-12 LV= Cup victory at The Stoop last week.


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Friday, 23 November 2012

RIVER WATCH - game update

Tow path currently closed at the back of the 6X (west) Stand, between North Parade and the Old Ticket Office.

All gates into ground are currently open. If collecting tickets for the game tonight, please pick up from Pulteney St ticket office.

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George Ford to Bath!?

George Ford is on the verge of leaving Leicester after becoming disillusioned with his lack of first-team chances as he competes with England's Toby Flood for the No 10 shirt.
Northampton and Bath, where Ford's father, former England defence coach Mike Ford, is on the management team, are watching the situation and may move for the 20-year-old in the January window.

Sources say Ford would rather stay at Welford Road, but only as first-choice stand-off. With Flood blocking his path and Leicester reluctant to play the man voted IRB World Junior Player of the Year 13 months ago, a final decision will be made by Ford by the end of the year.


Thursday, 22 November 2012

Bath Rugby team to face Harlequins

15. Nick Abendanon
14. Kyle Eastmond
13. Semesa Rokoduguni
12. Matt Banahan
11. Tom Biggs
10. Stephen Donald
9. Michael Claassens
1. Charlie Beech
2. Lee Mears
3. Anthony Perenise
4. Stuart Hooper (c)
5. Dave Attwood
6. Josh Ovens
7. Guy Mercer
8. Simon Taylor


16. Brett Sharman
17. Alan Cotter
18. Kane Palma-Newport
19. Dominic Day
20. Ryan Caldwell
21. Will Skuse
22. Mark McMillan
23. Jack Cuthbert

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Wednesday, 21 November 2012

Does size really matter?

Now I know where most of you may of thought I was going with the title but minds out of the gutter now, the question is about the English rugby team!

Aswell as an avid Bath fan I'm also a passionate Englishman and the general rule that to play for England you must be 6'+,built like a brick outhouse and run like Usain Bolt worries me we're becoming a one directional team.

Where has the little jinky runs to find space gone? Its all crash ball running straight trying to puncture the opponent's defence. English rugby is almost starting to resemble a glorified variant of rugby league, take the tackle recycle and continue, only you get more than five tackles but eventually kick the ball away!

It's wrong to compare the two but I'm going to anyway but amateur and professional rugby are almost two different sports. The brilliance of rugby was regardless of your shape and size there was a place on the park for you. Slightly rotund you were a prop, small guy punchy slight mental disposition your a hooker (Brian Moore), big old lofty one second row, short a*** who can run through others legs was a scrum half and so on but you get the point. Whereas now normally lining up in the White shirt bearing the proud Red Rose the only one prominently still with that prowess is the scrum half.


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Today members of the RFOTR Committee met with members of B&NES council who support the Bath Recreation Ground Trust Board to get a briefing on the Charity Commission Draft Scheme for the Rec. This Scheme will be put before the Trust Board at the November 29th Trust Board meeting - RFOTR members welcome to attend. On approval by the Trust Board the Charity Commission will allow 28 days for comments before finally adopting the Scheme.

Some key points of the Scheme are:

1. Resolve the breaches of the existing trusts arising from the lease to Bath Rugby Club.

2. Bath Rugby will have a new lease no longer than the expired term of the current lease. This lease will have a larger footprint in exchange for replacement land suitable for the purpose of the charity.

3. This is the Charity Commission Scheme created by them.

Information about the Draft Scheme can be found at

Approval of this Scheme will be the final step in a long road to getting Charity Commission endorsement for, and removal of barriers to, an arrangement that will enable redevelopment on the Rec. A key last step for RFOTR members and others will be to provide positive responses back to the Charity Commission on the Draft Scheme in the period from end of Nov to end of Dec. In a week or so we will be back to members with information on how they can do this. The Rec Trust will also be producing booklets with simplified information about the Draft Scheme and how people can respond to the Charity Commission. Stay tuned!

This is all a huge step forward - after almost 15 years we are getting very close!

You can contact the Executive Committee via email at

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Monday, 19 November 2012

Heathcote added to Scotland squad

Bath Rugby fly-half Tom Heathcote has been called up to the Scotland squad in preparation for Saturday's EMC Test against Tonga.

Heathcote, who qualifies for Scotland having been born in Inverness, joined up with the squad tonight.

Scotland head coach Andy Robinson said: "Tom has worked his way into the Bath first team squad from the academy and we've been monitoring his progress for the last couple of years."

Heathcote, who was recently short-listed for the 2013 LV= Breakthrough Player Award down south, told "I am delighted to be called up to the Scotland squad. I've always known I was eligible to play for Scotland and I'm grateful to be given this opportunity."

Bath Rugby First Team Coach Mike Ford commented: "This is fantastic news for Tom and the Club. His form last season, and what we've seen this season, has been very mature for his age and he has impressed a lot of people with his attitude and skill level – we are delighted for him."

The Scotland team to play Tonga will be announced in Aberdeen on Wednesday.

Source: Bath Rugby

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Saturday, 17 November 2012

MATCH REPORT: Harlequins 21 Bath Rugby 12

Bath Rugby suffered their first LV= Cup defeat at The Stoop as 15 first-half points from Ben Botica set up victory for Harlequins.

A tryless contest saw Stephen Donald kick three penalties and replacement Tom Heathcote one to keep Bath, who trailed 15-6 at the break, in touch.
But their hopes of following up last Saturday's opening Anglo-Welsh victory over Newport Gwent Dragons were dashed by the boot of teenager Louis Grimoldby, whose brace of penalties took the game out of the visitors' reach.
Prop Anthony Perinese and replacement hooker Brett Sharman were sin-binned in the first and second half respectively for Bath, who return to Aviva Premiership action with a home game against Quins in seven days' time.


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Thursday, 15 November 2012


The next meeting of the Board of Trustees of the Recreation Ground, Bath will be held on Thursday 29th November at 6.30pm in the Council Chamber, Bath Guildhall

The meeting will consider the next steps following consultation on the uses of the Rec and consideration by the Charity Commission. This is an important meeting and should be the announcement of the Charity Commission “Scheme” for the Rec enabling redevelopment to move ahead – AT LAST!!

It would be good if as many RFOTR members as possible could attend.

You can contact the Executive Committee via email at

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Teams: Harlequins v Bath Rugby

15 Ollie Devoto
14 Kyle Eastmond
13 Matt Banahan
12 Ben Williams
11 Tom Biggs
10 Stephen Donald
9 Chris Cook

1 Charlie Beech
2 Lee Mears ( c )
3 Anthony Perenise
4 Dominic Day
5 Dave Attwood
6 Will Skuse
7 Guy Mercer
8 Simon Taylor


16 Brett Sharman
17 Alan Cotter
18 Kane Palma-Newport
19 Ryan Caldwell
20 Josh Ovens
21 Michael Claassens
22 Tom Heathcote
23 Semesa Rokoduguni

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Monday, 12 November 2012

Munster prop Cotter joins Bath on short-term loan

Munster development prop Alan Cotter has joined Bath Rugby on loan from today until the end of the month.

The move is Cotter’s second stint with a Premiership side this season after his recent spell with London Irish where he played 25 minutes of rugby in each of his three games.


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Sunday, 11 November 2012

Roko runs riot as Bath Rugby slay Dragons in LV= Cup opener


By Harry Abbott

Semesa Rokoduguni scored two tries on debut as Bath Rugby kicked off their LV= Cup campaign with a comprehensive victory over Newport Gwent Dragons.

The Fijian winger, a reconnaissance tank solider of the Royal Scots Dragoon in the British Army, was handed a full-time contract at The Rec last month after an impressive trial period and rewarded head coach Gary Gold's faith with an impressive performance against the RaboDirect Pro12 strugglers.

Fly-half Tom Heathcote also showcased his promising talents by adding 21 points with the boot in a perfect kicking display to put pressure on the under-fire Stephen Donald following last week's last-gasp Aviva Premiership defeat at London Welsh.

Heathcote got Bath on the scoreboard early with a long-range penalty but the hosts still looked asleep when Dragons got the game's first try after six minutes.

Brett Sharman's lineout throw went long and Newport pounced on possession. Pat Leach threw the ball wide to Hallam Amos and he skipped down the touchline before passing inside to Ross Wardle to charge over the whitewash. Steffan Jones added the extras.

The home side were soon awake, however, and hit back with a try of their own. Olly Woodburn won a turnover on the right, Heathcote cut through the visitors' defence and offloaded to Rokoduguni, who ran 20 metres to the line.

Heathcote split the posts with the conversion and continued to show his capabilities on his first start of the season by adding four further penalties before the break.

Jones replied with a solitary kick at goal midway through the half for Dragons but his side's task got even steeper when second row Ian Nimmo was sin-binned for a high tackle on Heathcote on the stroke of the interval.


Friday, 9 November 2012

Bold Gold for LV

An intriguing and possibly an exciting line up announced for Bath's fixture against Newport and Gwent Dragons in the LV cup.

A bold eclectic mix of youth, experience, new and returning personnel will line up against the Dragons, and I for one really like the look of the team.

After the united fixture on bonfire night a lot of fans were hoping to see some of them feature in the LV, and Gary Gold did not disappoint. LV cup is predominantly seen as a good tournament to aid the experience of young players and help them prove their worth as a future rugbying star.

The decision to mix seasoned players is a good decision, to allow youth and enthusiasm to be steered in the direction of victory. To see Banahan and Hipkiss lining up in a centre partnering shows Bath aim to run hard and hit attacking rugby. The hype for Roko getting his first top flight start has arrived with the pairing up of Woodburn on the opposing wing, joining Heathcote, Devoto and McMillan in quite a dynamic back line.


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Bath Rugby team to face Newport Gwent Dragons

15 Ollie Devoto
14 Olly Woodburn
13 Dan Hipkiss
12 Matt Banahan
11 Semesa Rokoduguni
10 Tom Heathcote
9 Mark McMillan
1 Charlie Beech
2 Brett Sharman
3 Anthony Perenise
4 Stuart Hooper (c)
5 Will Spencer
6 Josh Ovens
7 Guy Mercer
8 Simon Taylor


16 Will Tanner
17 Ken Dowding
18 Kane Palma-Newport
19 Ryan Caldwell
20 Will Skuse
21 Chris Cook
22 Luke Adamson
23 Richard Lane

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Thursday, 8 November 2012

Bath Rugby First-team coach Brad Davis confident of Heineken Cup spot

First-team coach Brad Davis has backed Bath Rugby to return to the Heineken Cup next season despite their stuttering start to the current campaign.

An eighth-placed finish last term meant Bath missed out on a spot in Europe's premier competition, instead having to settle for participation in the Amlin Cup.

They have looked most convincing when playing on the continent this season and have won just half of their Aviva Premiership fixtures following Sunday's defeat at London Welsh.

Their bid to reclaim a place amongst Europe's elite now sees Bath's attentions turn to the LV= Cup, with the tournament victors handed an automatic berth into next year's Heineken Cup.

"It is another avenue for Heineken Cup qualification and I have no doubt that we will get qualification," said Davis, ahead of Bath's opener at home to Newport Gwent Dragons on Saturday (2.15pm).

"Whether it's through the Premiership, the LV= or the Amlin, we're going to get it.

"It's important for us to strive for success and have that winning mentality in whichever game we play. It's a cliche but winning breeds confidence."

Despite the frustration at not being able to rectify their Premiership form for two weeks, Davis expects Bath to return to winning ways against the Dragons.

The RaboDirect Pro 12 strugglers head to The Rec on the back of five straight defeats and have won just twice this season.


Bath confident that Louw will stay

Bath Rugby boss Gary Gold is confident that star flanker Francois Louw will spurn offers from South Africa to re-sign with the Aviva Premiership side.

Louw is currently on international duty with the Springboks and has been named in the starting XV ahead of their match with Ireland on Saturday. The flanker also turned out during the Rugby Championship and with fellow internationals such as Francois Steyn opting to leave lucrative European-based contracts and return to South Africa, there were rumours that Louw, who is halfway through his three-year deal with Bath, would opt to do the same.

The 27-year-old flanker has been one of Bath's standout players since his switch from the Stormers ahead of the 2011-12 season and has captained the team on a number of occasions. And Gold, who is a former Springboks assistant coach, is optimistic that Louw can combine his domestic duties with his international commitments and will choose to stay at the Recreation Ground.


Wednesday, 7 November 2012

Louw to start for the Springboks

South Africa team to face Ireland
15 Zane Kirchner
14 JP Pietersen
13 Jaco Taute
12 Jean de Villiers (captain)
11 Francois Hougaard
10 Pat Lambie
9 Ruan Pienaar
8 Duane Vermeulen
7 Willem Alberts
6 Francois Louw
5 Juandré Kruger
4 Eben Etzebeth
3 Jannie du Plessis
2 Adriaan Strauss
1 Tendai Mtawarira
16 Schalk Brits
17 CJ van der Linde
18 Pat Cilliers
19 Flip van der Merwe
20 Marcell Coetzee
21 Morné Steyn
22 Juan de Jongh
23 Lwazi Mvovo
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Video: LV=Cup is the chance for young talent to shine, says ex-Bath Rugby star Lewis Moody

Former Bath star Lewis Moody believes the LV=Cup represents a great chance for young talent to showcase their abilities in a competitive environment.

Retired flanker Moody, who won the competition with Leicester Tigers in 2007, is an ambassador for the Anglo-Welsh cup which is known for giving future stars their big break.


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Tuesday, 6 November 2012

The indifferent Bath.

It's safe to say the positivity amongst the Bath fans took a huge knock from the London Welsh game.

Off the back of chiefs and Agen games the Blue, Black and White faithful shared a belief that there was a strong passion and determination within the team. So what went wrong against Welsh? Bath had some good attacking phases but just seemed to lack some of the clinical prowess they had displayed of recent times. Just as they looked like scoring on several occasions an infringement would occur or Welsh would win a turnover.

For me it appeared that Bath went out with an intent to defend heavily, draw the exiles forward then kick down field to catch them on the break. An intriguing game plan, perhaps not having total faith in the team due to injury absentees. A noticeable missing link was Louw whose driven the pack on in recent fixtures, but one man should not make such a difference. For the first time this season the forwards just seemed under powered and below par.

Missing more than anything in the exchange with Welsh was the character, pride and passion that had been displayed against Chiefs. Perhaps its slightly wrong of me to carry on comparing the two games but the diverse change in beyond blatant for anybody to see. For the United fixture against Quins we were treated to some more of that dogged determination we'd been tempted with against Agen and chiefs. I had it pointed out to me by Mr Gary Gold himself they are one squad and one team, the will to win flows from the top to bottom. So the question still lends itself to what went wrong against Welsh.......complacency, Injuries, wrong game plan or it was just one of those days??? Either way It's safe to say consistency seems to be a sight miss at the moment.


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Sunday, 4 November 2012

Aviva Premiership table after round 8

Bath Rugby fall to last-gasp defeat

Bath Rugby came away from the Kassam Stadium with a losing bonus point this afternoon after Nick Scott stole a 16-9 win for London Welsh with an intercept try in the last minute of the game.

Stephen Donald and Gavin Henson exchanged early penalty misses as the game commenced, before the Welshman broke the deadlock on 10 minutes.

Bath were looking to create space to attack with centres Matt Banahan and Ben Williams combining well to bust holes in the Welsh defence. However, the home side held on and managed to re-group and keep out Michael Claassens, Guy Mercer and Tom Biggs as they launched a series of attacks on the try line.

With just under 20 minutes gone, Welsh forced their way up-field. A great covering tackle from Mercer prevented the breakaway try, but a couple of phases on and Henson extended the lead after referee Andrew Small awarded a penalty. 6-0.

Friday, 2 November 2012

Claassens considering Bath stay

Bath scrum-half Michael Claassens is considering extending his contract with the club beyond the end of this season.

The former Springbok initially joined the club back in 2007 and has settled into life in the city, making over 100 appearances for the club as well as captaining the side on numerous occasions.
Currently forming a potent half-back combination with Stephen Donald, Claassens admits he is considering whether to extend his stay in the UK for a third time, or return home to the hard grounds of South Africa and Super Rugby.


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Bath Rugby team to face London Welsh

15 Nick Abendanon
14 Kyle Eastmond
13 Matt Banahan
12 Ben Williams
11 Tom Biggs
10 Stephen Donald
9 Michael Claassens
1 Paul James
2 Lee Mears
3 Anthony Perenise
4 Dominic Day
5 Dave Attwood
6 Stuart Hooper ( c )
7 Will Skuse
8 Ben Skirving


16 Brett Sharman
17 Charlie Beech
18 Kane Palma-Newport
19 Will Spencer
20 Guy Mercer
21 Mark McMillan
22 Sam Vesty
23 Horacio Agulla

Thursday, 1 November 2012

Bath centre Dan Hipkiss banned for one match after red card against Exeter

The 30-year-old was received two yellow cards during Bath's Aviva Premiership victory over Exeter last Saturday.

The first yellow was for a technical offence, and the second for misconduct as he interfered with the ball when it was out of play.

Hipkiss had been sin-binned when he stopped Exeter taking a quick lineout throw, prompting referee Wayne Barnes to brandish a second yellow, which meant an automatic red card.

The RFU announced that Hipkiss will be free to play again next Monday after appearing before judicial officer His Honour Judge Jeff Blackett.

The suspension means that Hipkiss will miss Bath's Premiership clash with London Welsh at the Kassam Stadium on Sunday.

Source: Sky Sports

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Bath Rugby's Nick Abendanon determined to stake England claim

Nick Abendanon is determined to put his England disappointment behind him to inspire a Bath Rugby charge up the Aviva Premiership table.

After a flying start to the season, many had expected the full-back to be included in Stuart Lancaster's squad for England's QBE internationals, which get under way with Fiji's trip to Twickenham next weekend.

He had impressed during his previous appearance in a Red Rose jersey, scoring a hat-trick for England's midweek side after being called up as injury cover for this summer's tour to South Africa.
Instead of joining club-mate Davey Wilson in heading to the national team's training camp, however, Abendanon will have to settle for a much more low-key arena this week – London Welsh's Kassam Stadium home in Oxford.


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Perenise looking to pack a punch in Bath No.3 shirt

Anthony Perenise admits it will be a tough ask to do Bath Rugby's No.3 jersey proud in David Wilson's absence, but the Samoan prop is going to give it everything he's got.

Bath have been enjoying themselves so far this Aviva Premiership season, currently sitting sixth in the table following a 23-15 West Country derby win over Exeter Chiefs.

But continuing their 34-year unbeaten run over the Chiefs wasn't a straight forward affair, Exeter fighting back only for a Stephen Donald penalty to effectively settle things.

Prop Perenise entered the fray with 24 minutes remaining but, with both sides looking for a bonus point, he ended up playing over half an hour - good practice for things to come.


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Matt Banahan back for Bath Rugby but Francois Louw faces fresh fitness battle

Matt Banahan’s return from injury has given Bath Rugby a big boost as they look to make it back-to-back Aviva Premiership wins for the first time since early September.

That is also when the giant centre last played, having been sidelined since damaging his right knee on the way to a home win over Wasps in round two.


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