Thursday, 28 February 2013

Bath Rugby team to face Gloucester Rugby


15. Nick Abendanon
14. Horacio Agulla
13. Matt Banahan
12. Kyle Eastmond
11. Tom Biggs
10. Tom Heathcote
9. Peter Stringer
1. Paul James
2. Rob Webber
3. David Wilson
4. Dominic Day
5. Dave Attwood
6. Francois Louw ( c )
7. Carl Fearns
8. Ben Skirving

Replacements

16. Ross Batty
17. Nathan Catt
18. Anthony Perenise
19. Will Spencer
20. Mat Gilbert
21. Michael Claassens
22. Sam Vesty



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Wednesday, 27 February 2013

Is pleasure followed by pain? New ground new Prices?

It's a rigmarole that has been going on for a very long time, the redevelopment of the Rec. It's been a saga that has confused many a Bath fan, as we want Bath to play there but need an up to date ground. Yes I want the Rec to be redeveloped but how much of a price will it cost the Bath Faithful?

Ticket prices through rugby have been increasing over the years since the turn of professionalism, but how much more can the fans sustain the increases? A point was raised how much Sarries were charging for tickets at their new all singing all dancing Allianz park, a premium seat could of set you back £70 in a premiership fixture. When you look along the lines of Manchester United who have the most expensive seat in the house priced at £52, suddenly it seems that rugby is becoming a more expensive outing than its richer counterpart football.

Read more...


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Day's international absence powering Bath Rugby's ambitions

Dominic Day cannot hide his frustration at missing out on an international call-up this season but the second-row insists Bath Rugby's fine recent form has gone a long way to easing his pain.

Up until last weekend's narrow 25-23 defeat to Northampton Saints Gary Gold's side had been nigh on unbeatable in 2013, starting the New Year with six wins from their first seven games in all competitions.

And Day has been a key figure in that fine run, forming a potent second-row pairing with Dave Attwood that has seen Bath re-enter the play-off race in the Aviva Premiership.

Currently seventh but only seven points behind fourth-placed Gloucester Rugby with their local rivals coming to the Rec this friday in front of the ESPN cameras, Gold's troops are right back in the top-four mix.

For Day internationally it has been a case of what might have been, the Welshman picked up an injury at just the wrong time with Rob Howley's side suffering an injury crisis in the second row.

The unproven Andrew Coombs has stepped into the Wales engine room this Six Nations and has been one of the finds of the tournament so far but according to Day, who joined Bath from Scarlets this summer, his club form has merited a call-up.

Read more...

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Sunday, 24 February 2013

Northampton's late try does for Bath after penalty try controversy

Two tries from Jamie Elliott kept Northampton in the hunt for a top four finish after a pulsating finish against Bath .

With 20 minutes to go, Northampton were 20-9 up and apparently heading for a routine home win.

But the referee, Luke Pearce, sparked the game into life by awarding a controversial penalty try and when the centre Semesa Rokoduguni followed up with an another, Bath led 23-20 with 10 minutes to go. The England discard Ben Foden then rose to the challenge to send Elliott over for his second try with seven minutes left and Northampton clung on for a vital win.

Pearce's late intervention clearly shocked the home crowd as he offered Bath a way back into the game after a scrum collapsed. The visiting forwards were moving forward, but it was seven metres from the line and it was the first time Northampton had been penalised for the offence.

Read more...


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Saturday, 23 February 2013

Bath RFC Ladies

Bath RFC Ladies are aiming to set up a new girls rugby section in Bath.

They want to introduce under13s, under 15s and under 18s teams.

Currently there is only provision for girls to play up to the age of 11, with the minis - a mixed girls and boys team.

At the age of 18 they can join the ladies, but until then they can only play rugby in school.

The club would spend their share of the money on setting up teams to enable them to continue with the sport after leaving the minis.

This will keep them fit and active, and allow them to meet new people while playing rugby for a club.

By giving them more opportunity to play it will also build up their skills.

They will then be able to take these skills to the ladies team when they turn 18.

Money would also be spent on equipment for the girls, food for catering the matches, travel to away games, and kit.

Bath RFC Ladies would also use any funding they receive to produce leaflets to promote the teams and encourage more girls to play.

The team feels it is a shame that there is nowhere in Bath that girls under the age of 18 can play rugby.

With help from the Wish campaign they aim to address this situation, and give girls the chance to play and enjoy the sport.

Source: Bath Chronicle

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Friday, 22 February 2013

Bath Rugby team to face Northampton Saints:

15. Nick Abendanon
14. Horacio Agulla
13. Matt Banahan
12. Kyle Eastmond
11. Tom Biggs
10. Tom Heathcote
9. Peter Stringer
1. Charlie Beech
2. Rob Webber (c)
3. Anthony Perenise
4. Dominic Day
5. Dave Attwood
6. Carl Fearns
7. Mat Gilbert
8. Ben Skirving

Replacements

16. Ross Batty
17. Nathan Catt
18. Kane Palma-Newport
19. Will Spencer
20. Nick Koster
21. Michael Claassens
22. Sam Vesty
23. Semesa Rokoduguni


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RFOTR - Rec Progress Update

In today's Bath Chronicle there is a headline article titled 'Rec to rival best in world' which includes a lot of quotes from Bath Rugby's owner Bruce Craig about his vision for the Rec, and a good summary of the status of progress on the Rec. Well worth a read!

The Charity Commission has appointed an independent reviewer to look at its proposed 'Scheme' for the Rec in light of the many responses received during the consultation period on the 'Scheme' last December. As we informed RFOTR members in an earlier email 1,868 responses were received by the Charity Commission with 1,624 (87%) being supportive of the 'Scheme'. The Charity Commission's decision on whether or not to move ahead with the 'Scheme' is expected by the end of April.

In another development those opposing development of a new arena on the Rec have applied to B&NES Council to Rec designated as a Town/Village Green. We reported this move to RFOTR members in an earlier email. We understand that B&NES Council will decide their response to this application in April. As we told RFOTR members earlier this application is simply a delaying tactic with no merit. Below are the key points from our earlier email:

"Our understanding is that this application fails the criteria of “the land having been used and continuing to be used as of right by the inhabitants of the City of Bath for at least 20 years for lawful sports and pastimes” for multiple reasons including:

- All sporting activities on the Rec (formal or informal) need the permission of the Rec Trust and have to be booked through the Trust
- The Leisure Centre (which is included in the application) clearly does not have free access and is not open at all times.
- The tennis courts and other facilities on the Rec do not have open access for ‘sports and pastimes’
- On rugby match days there is not free access to the pitch and stands for ‘sports and pastimes’.

In the unlikely event that the application to make the Rec a ‘Town/Village Green’ becomes successful, this would have a number of consequences. One of these would make all the current activities on the Rec, including the Leisure Centre, unlawful with major negative impacts on the citizens of Bath. In addition the Rec Trust and B&NES could be left with a large financial liability which would end up with the council taxpayers of B&NES."

A lot due to happen over the next couple of months, but we are confident that we are getting closer and closer to having a world-class venue at the Rec for 'All Sports for All People'!



CONTACTS
You can contact the Executive Committee via email at contact@realfriendsoftherec.co.uk


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Thursday, 21 February 2013

Bath Rugby duo Stephen Donald and Francois Louw face battle to be fit for Northampton Saints trip

Stephen Donald and Francois Louw will be given as long as possible to be fit for this weekend’s Aviva Premiership trip to Franklin’s Gardens.

Bath Rugby travel to the home of Northampton Saints on Saturday (3pm) but could be without the two key internationals, who both limped off during the win over London Irish.

Fly-half Donald suffered cartilage damage to his ribs, while Louw has been struck down with a hip problem and face a race against time to be fit this weekend.

Read more...


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Bath Rugby owner Bruce Craig: New Rec to rival best in the world

Bath Rugby owner Bruce Craig says the club’s new arena will be “world-class” and “well worth waiting for”.

The club is still confident that it will be able to transform its cramped and outdated ground at The Rec by the year 2015.

And it has put a brave face on the legal hurdles that still need to be cleared before work can start on a new homewith a maximum capacity of around 18,000.

Read more...

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Wednesday, 20 February 2013

Bath Rugby transfer rumours...!

Transfer Rumours:

In

George Ford – Leicester – Bath
Anthony Watson- London Irish- Bath
Matt Garvey- London Irish- Bath
Jonathan Joseph- London Irish- Bath
Toby Faletau – Newport Dragons- Bath
Micky Young-Leicester- Bath
Andy Goode – Worcester -Wasps/London Irish/Leicester/Gloucester/Bath
Alex Gray – London Irish- Bath

Out

Michael Claasens – Bath – Toulon
Stephen Donald – Bath – Japan (Club unknown)
James Tyas – Bath- Cornish Pirates
Simon Taylor- Bath- retired/? (Played in France before)

For a full list of rumours across all clubs click here...

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Bath: Peter Stringer delighted to be playing again after loan move

Scrum-half Peter Stringer is enjoying playing regularly again after joining Bath on loan from Munster last month.
The 35-year-old Ireland international has started the last two games in Bath's six-match winning streak.
"It's been a great four weeks," he told BBC Radio Bristol. "We're playing well and the backs are benefiting from a pack that is dominating.
"It doesn't matter that I'm on loan, I've just thrown myself in to prove I can still play top-level rugby."

Read more...


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Tuesday, 19 February 2013

Claassens to leave Bath at end of season

BATH head coach Gary Gold has confirmed that long-serving scrum-half Michael Claassens will leave the club at the end of the season.

The 30-year-old, capped eight times by South Africa, will move on after the conclusion of the current campaign, with big-spending French outfit Toulon widely rumoured to be his destination.

Read more...

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Bath Rugby bolster forwards with double signing

Bath Rugby is delighted to announce the signings of number eight Leroy Houston and tighthead prop Juan Pablo Orlandi.

Australian Houston arrives at the Rec following a two year stint at French club Colomiers. He impressed Bath Head Coach Gary Gold hugely while playing in the Queensland Reds side that lifted the Super 15 trophy in 2011. An explosive ball carrier, the 26 year old quickly became a key player for the Reds, and Gold expects him to do the same for his new club.

Argentinean international Orlandi, 29, joins us from another French club, Racing Metro 92, where he has spent the last three seasons. A scrummaging specialist, he will be a real asset to the Club as the Aviva Premiership continues to demand more and more of its front row players.

Speaking of the signings, Gold said: "These are two very significant signings for Bath in that they say a lot about our ambition. Leroy is a guy I have admired for a long time, and we are delighted to have secured him. He's very dangerous with ball in hand, and loves to hit hard in defence.

"Juan Pablo is also a very powerful man. I spoke personally to the Pumas coach, Santiago Phelan, and he backed up our opinions, telling me that this guy is the real deal. To have depth in such key positions as tighthead prop is vital, and to add a world class player to our squad is very pleasing. We can't wait to get these guys training with us and to see them develop into Bath players."


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Saturday, 16 February 2013

Gary Gold wants further improvements form his Bath side

Bath head coach Gary Gold was pleased with his side's bonus-point win over London Irish but warned his players there is plenty to work on.

Bath secured a sixth win in succession with a 40-16 victory over the Exiles at the Rec to move above Exeter and enhance their bid for a Heineken Cup qualifying spot next season.

But the Bath head coach is eager to keep his players' feet on the ground.

Gold said: "I'm really keen to emphasise that I don't want us to get ahead of ourselves.

"We're getting some things right but it wasn't a great first-half performance. There were a couple of opportunities we could have finished so I suppose the exciting part is there is a lot of room to improve.

"The basics are there and the forwards are setting a platform. I hope we are playing an entertaining game and we are scoring tries. Obviously, we are really happy with that as a performance.

"It was a very good Irish team. We had to bring our 'A' game to beat them today. They have a very good backline and we had a lapse of concentration at one point.

Read more...

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Bath Rugby beat London Irish to record sixth straight win

MATCH REPORT: BATH RUGBY 40 LONDON IRISH 16

Bath Rugby punished an ill-disciplined London Irish display at The Rec to pick up a sixth consecutive victory in all competitions.

Irish had three players sent to the sin-bin and conceded 23 penalties, allowing Bath to secure their second Aviva Premiership bonus-point win on the bounce.

Read more...


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Friday, 15 February 2013

Bath Rugby team to face London Irish


15. Nick Abendanon
14. Horacio Agulla
13. Matt Banahan
12. Kyle Eastmond
11. Tom Biggs
10. Stephen Donald
9. Peter Stringer
1. Paul James
2. Rob Webber
3. David Wilson
4. Dominic Day
5. Dave Attwood
6. Francois Louw ( c )
7. Carl Fearns
8. Ben Skirving

Replacements

16. Ross Batty
17. Nathan Catt
18. Anthony Perenise
19. Will Spencer
20. Mat Gilbert
21. Chris Cook
22. Tom Heathcote
23. Semesa Rokoduguni


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Thursday, 14 February 2013

Charity Commission Rec verdict now expected in April

A Charity Commission decision which could pave the way for Bath Rugby building a new arena on The Rec has had to be delayed.

A commission official - known as an independent reviewer, who has not been involved with any earlier discussions on the scheme, has been appointed to look again at the issue.

This is because although the vast majority of people who commented on land-swap plans were in favour of them, the fact that 244 out of the 1,868 were opposed, means it has to be reassessed.

Read more...


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Lee Mears looks on the bright side after 'surreal' rugby retirement

Lee Mears is just about getting used to the fact he will never again be able to pull on Bath Rugby’s famous Blue, Black and White shirt.

The legendary hooker, pictured below, spent 16 years at The Rec but was forced into retirement this week because of a heart condition, having been told that his long-term health was at risk if he continued playing.

The 33-year-old first learnt he would have to give up the game he loves on January 30. After the initial shock of the assessment, Mears knew he had to call it a day with a new-born baby and wife Danielle to care for.

Read more...


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Wednesday, 13 February 2013

Revitalised front five at heart of Bath Rugby resurgence, says Fearns

Having won five games on the bounce in all competitions, notching 21 tries en route, Bath Rugby fans could be forgiven for thinking the club's backs had been given a new lease of life.

But flanker Carl Fearns insists the side's rapid improvement can be traced back to a revitalised forward pack that is going to drive the West Country outfit back up the Aviva Premiership table.
The 23-year-old back row is likely to be a vital cog in that machine, following a frustrating three-month spell on the sidelines with an ankle injury.

But restored to full fitness, Fearns was at the heart of a thumping LV=Cup victory over local rivals Gloucester Rugby at Kingsholm and the 32-9 win over Worcester Warriors last weekend.

And Fearns believes Bath are on the right track to improve their lowly league position - and maybe pick up some silverware en route this season.

"The squad are full of confidence at the moment and our attack has come on massively in the last four games," said Fearns, who joined Bath from Sale Sharks in 2011.

"We are making big strides forward and got the win against Gloucester away and then Worcester. We are doing a lot of work during training on our organisation and our shape in defence.

"Now we're getting ourselves into positions that maybe at the start of the season we weren't and taking those opportunities.

Read more...


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Monday, 11 February 2013

Last two home fixtures of the season confirmed

The last two home fixtures of the season have now been confirmed, with the games against London Welsh and Leicester Tigers both being at our preferred time of 14.15 on a Saturday.

The game against London Welsh will take place on Saturday 30th March, with the historically-loaded clash with Leicester being on Saturday 20th April, and broadcast live on ESPN.

Coming at the business end of the season, both these games will be vital to our Aviva Premiership campaign, and the boys will need all your support to finish the season at the right end of the table.

Tickets for the Welsh game are on sale to Season Ticket Holders today, to Members on Wednesday 13th and on general sale on Monday 18th February.
The final regular season contest at the Recreation Ground sees us take on our biggest rivals, as the Tigers come to town. Tickets go on sale later this month, being available to Season Ticket Holders on the 20th February, Members on the 22nd February and general sale on the 25th February.


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Sad news...Bath Rugby Legend Forced to Retire With Immediate Effect

Bath Rugby is incredibly sad to announce the retirement of hooker Lee Mears with immediate effect.

Through the Club's medical screening programme, an abnormality that is known to occur in some athletes was noticed on Mears's cardiac screening. He has been informed that there is a significant potential risk of developing further complications if he continues to perform the prolonged strenuous exercises required to be an elite rugby player. He has therefore been advised by a specialist to retire from professional rugby.

A veteran of 268 Club appearances, 42 England caps as well as one for the British and Irish Lions, Mears has been with the Club since 1997. Speaking of the decision, he said: "Bath is my Club and I love it. This is not how I saw it ending but I feel enormously proud to have played for such a Club so many times. This will be a tough period, but the memories I have and the friends I have made over the years will be of huge support. Thank you to the Club and to the supporters, I've loved every minute."

Bath Head Coach, Gary Gold, said: "Mearsy is a legend, pure and simple. His retirement will be felt by all of us at the Club, and also by the supporters who have cheered him on over the years. The only thing that matters is that he is healthy, and if that means he stops playing, then that's the way it has to be. He will be missed, but we will always welcome him back with open arms. This is his Club, and it always will be. We send him off with real affection and gratitude."

Read more...


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Saturday, 9 February 2013

Aviva Premiership: Gary Gold praises Kyle Eastmond after Bath's win over Worcester

Bath head coach Gary Gold hailed England prospect Kyle Eastmond as a "prodigious talent" after he helped his side to a 32-9 bonus-point win over Worcester.

Eastmond returned to Bath'sstarting XV after featuring being on England Saxons duty last weekend and he created second-half tries for Tom Biggs and Horacio Agulla.

And Gold was suitably impressed by Eastmond's performance in a playmaking role of inside centre.

"He's outstanding," Gold said. "We need the ball in Kyle's hands. He's a prodigious talent, passes off both hands.

"If he needs to kick, he can kick. We have to do the work to put him in the right positions."

Agulla grabbed another try while Peter Stringer and Rob Webber also crossed for the hosts as they secured a fifth successive win.

Read more...

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Five try bonus point win for Bath Rugby

Bath Rugby burst back into Aviva Premiership action with a barn-storming bonus point win over Worcester Warriors at the Recreation Ground this afternoon, final-score 32-9.

A tight first-half saw the two sides go in just four points apart, but in the later 40 minutes Bath opened up, spreading the ball wide and at pace, and scoring 19 unanswered points on their way to victory.
The home side set the tone early, applying pressure to the Worcester defence from the outset.

The first try came with just five minutes gone on the clock, courtesy of scrum-half Peter Stringer. Ben Skirving picked the ball up from the base of the scrum and charged towards the line. The ball was recycled and sent wide to Abendanon who jinked his way towards the line. He offloaded to Biggs who took play up to the line, with Stringer on hand to gather the ball and dart over from short-range. 5-0.
The Warriors weren't content to let Bath have it all their own way however, and were working hard to break through the defence. They were awarded a penalty, which fly-half Danny Gray sent to touch. Winger David Lemi looked to have crossed the line, only for the try to be ruled out due to a forward pass. Referee Wayne Barnes did however award the visitors another penalty, which Gray sent cleanly through the posts to reduce the deficit. 5-3.

Read more...


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Friday, 8 February 2013

Brad Davis to leave Bath Rugby

Bath Rugby have confirmed that First Team Coach Brad Davis will be leaving the Club to progress his coaching career elsewhere.
He will be leaving with our best wishes, having been with Bath for over six years, after joining from Castleford Tigers in 2006. He primarily worked as defence and backs coach, establishing Bath as one of the toughest defences in the Premiership over the last few seasons, and was an integral part of the coaching team who led the team to victory in the European Challenge Cup in 2008, and three successive Aviva Premiership semi-finals in 2008, 2009 and 2010.

Commenting on the announcement, Davis said: "This has been a very tough decision, but one I feel is right for both myself and the Club. I've learnt a lot in my time here, and I'd like to thank all the players, coaching and backroom staff, plus of course all the Bath supporters who have made my stay at Bath Rugby such a memorable experience. The time is right for me to move on and explore new opportunities, and I hope the Club has every success in the future."

Nick Blofeld, Bath Rugby Chief Executive, added: "Brad has been a great servant to the Club since coming here, and has been instrumental in developing such a strong defence in recent seasons. We would like to thank him for his commitment and contribution to the Club, and wish him all the very best. He'll always be welcome back and we hope to see him at the Rec and in the Clubhouse when time permits."

Source: Bath Rugby

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Bath Rugby to face Worcester Warriors

15. Nick Abendanon
14. Horacio Agulla
13. Kyle Eastmond
12. Matt Banahan
11. Tom Biggs
10. Stephen Donald
9. Peter Stringer
1. Charlie Beech
2. Rob Webber
3. Anthony Perenise
4. Dominic Day
5. Dave Attwood
6. Francois Louw
7. Carl Fearns
8. Ben Skirving

Replacements

16. Ross Batty
17. Nathan Catt
18. Kane Palma-Newport
19. Will Spencer
20. Mat Gilbert
21. Chris Cook
22. Tom Heathcote
23. Semesa Rokoduguni


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Thursday, 7 February 2013

Bath Rugby set to seal deals as squad takes shape

Bath Rugby fans can expect to have a clearer picture of what the club’s 2013-14 squad will look like within the next few weeks.

Head coach Gary Gold has so far been tight-lipped over any prospective arrivals and only contract extensions for six current stars have been announced.

But Bath are close to capturing new signings according to first-team coach Toby Booth, while more contract renewals are also nearing agreement.

Read more...

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Wednesday, 6 February 2013

Where's the television Love!

Rugby has always been a popular sport but things changed in 2003, the moment 'that kick' went over and we all saw that iconic moment of Martin Johnson raising the Webb Ellis cup above his head, the sports popularity stepped up a whole new level! Suddenly children had new heroes and wanted to emulate the World Cup winning stars. Just one little issue with aiding the popularity of the sport........media coverage.

Almost 10 years down the line has the coverage of rugby catapulted into the lime light.....easy answer no! With BT taking on the mantle for the premiership next season we are now left waiting how accessible will it be to us and how much will we now have to pay for the privilege of watching the team we love? To watch most things oval ball related you need a Sky TV and ESPN subscription at the moment, but with that you get internationals, Premiership, Sevens and even down under for the Super 15. Terrestrial viewing allows us World Cup, RBS Six Nations and highlight shows and they are few and far between, so to watch some rugby on TV it's a hard task to do.

Read more...

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Back to back LV wins sees Bath march into the Semi's

Two back to back LV=Cup wins for Bath has seen them barrel their way into the semi-finals when it was looking like a long shot for them to do so. A big ask, but an inspired move from Gary Gold helped spark the ignition of Bath to drive forward and gain their place in the last four.

With the RBS Six Nations due players were to be drafted out for international duties either be first teams or 'A' teams respectively many teams were to be light on players, also many squads concentrating on Premiership, Heineken cup or even Amlin teams decided to rest a few elite players for LV=Cup fixtures. Bath also struck with the loss of Claasens through injury were left with Chris Cook and Mark McMillan, two young scrum halves with a huge task of holding the fort until the return of the more experienced Claasens can make his return. With this news Gary Gold looked to an old favourite of his and drafted in Irish scrum half legend Peter Stringer.

Read more...


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Monday, 4 February 2013

Quins await in LV= Cup semi-final showdown

Following on from the emphatic victory at Kingsholm over old rivals Gloucester on Saturday, we can now confirm that we will take on Harlequins at the Twickenham Stoop in the LV= Cup semi-final.
The kick-off time and date has also been confirmed as Saturday 9th March, 12.15, so make sure the date is in your diary!

Ticket details will follow soon, but for now, save the date and join the Blue, Black and White army in semi-final action.

Having already booked their place in the knock-out stages of one tournament, this will give the Bath boys another chance to do battle for silverwear, and we will need all your support to make it to the final!

And don't forget, tickets are still available for you and your mates to support us as we look to climb the Aviva Premiership table against Worcester Warriors at the Rec this Saturday – kick-off 14.15. Call 0844 448 1865 to book yours now!


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Sunday, 3 February 2013

Shed silenced as Bath Rugby win at Gloucester to secure LV= Cup semi-final spot

MATCH REPORT: Gloucester 5 Bath Rugby 32

Bath Rugby booked an LV= Cup semi-final spot for the second successive year after breaking their Kingsholm hoodoo with a bonus-point triumph.

The win was Bath’s first at the homeof their fierce West Country rivals since 2006 and had the Cherry and Whites’ fans heading for the exits early.

Read more...

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Friday, 1 February 2013

Bath Rugby team to face Glaws in the LV tomorrow

15 Nick Abendanon
14 Horacio Agulla
13 Matt Banahan
12 Sam Vesty
11 Olly Woodburn
10 Stephen Donald
9 Peter Stringer
1 Charlie Beech
2 Rob Webber
3 Anthony Perenise
4 Dave Attwood
5 Dominic Day
6 Francois Louw
7 Carl Fearns
8 Ben Skirving

Replacements

16 Ross Batty
17 Nathan Catt
18 Kane Palma-Newport
19 Will Spencer
20 Mat Gilbert
21 Chris Cook
22 Semesa Rokoduguni
23 Jack Cuthbert



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