Tuesday, 30 April 2013

Bath Rugby confirm Ford signing

Bath Rugby can now finally confirm the signing of fly-half George Ford, who will be joining the Club over the summer.

An extremely talented young player, Ford was the first English player and youngest ever player to win the IRB Junior Player of the Year award following a number of commanding performances for England U20 in the 2011 Junior World Cup. He was also the youngest player in the England squad at that time.
In total, he made 14 appearances for England U18 and 11 for England U20 before being promoted to the England Saxons squad. Having been the youngest player to make his professional debut at club level, he has gone on to make 33 first team appearances for Leicester Tigers, scoring 220 points to date.

Speaking of the move, George said: "I'm really excited by the move to Bath. It's a club building for the long-term, focusing on developing young players like myself and I can't wait to be part of that environment."

Head Coach Gary Gold commented: "George is an exceptionally talented young player, and we are very much looking forward to him joining us here in Bath. He has already shown a tremendous range of skills, and at just 19 we know he will only grow as a player and further develop those skills."

Source: Bath Rugby

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Young and Roberts sign for Bath Rugby

Bath Rugby have added depth to their scrum-half options with the signings of both Micky Young and Martin Roberts, the Club are pleased to confirm today.

24 year-old Young has represented England throughout the age-groups, including three Churchill Cup campaigns with the Saxons in 2011, and scoring the winning try in the IRB Sevens in 2008/09 against New Zealand. Known for his darting runs and ability to read the game quickly, he made 79 appearances in three years with Newcastle Falcons before moving to Leicester in 2011.

Three times Wales capped Roberts is a constant running threat, capable of beating defenders and gaining valuable metres. He pulled on the Red jersey at every school and junior level, before winning his debut senior cap against Canada in 2008.

Commenting on the signings, Bath Rugby Head Coach Gary Gold said: "Micky and Martin are both very strong, capable players with good core skills and the ability to do things the opposition don't expect. They are still young, and we are looking forward to having them join the squad here and seeing them develop further."

Source: Bath Rugby

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Monday, 29 April 2013

Rec trustees lodge official objection to Bath town green bid

Council chiefs have made an official objection to an application to grant The Rec town green status.

Bath and North East Somerset Council, as collective trustee of The Rec, has submitted an objection to the application by Bathwick resident Jack Sparrow.

Mr Sparrow wants The Rec to be designated a town green to prevent Bath Rugby from expanding by building a new arena on the city centre site.


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Bath Rugby extend Mercer’s deal

Bath Rugby are delighted to confirm that openside flanker Guy Mercer has extended his contract with the Club.

Mercer, 23, is a former King Edward's School pupil and a product of the Bath Academy. He has, to date, made 59 first team appearances and is known for his ferocious work ethic and positive attitude, making the decision to extend his stay an easy one.
Speaking of his new deal, Mercer commented: "Bath is my home and I'm extremely pleased to have extended my contract. The environment here is fantastic and is certainly one in which a player will develop. I wouldn't want to be anywhere else."

Head Coach Gary Gold added: "Guy is a very impressive young man. He is Bath born and bred, and he plays and trains as if this Club means everything to him. We believe he has what it takes to be a major part of this Club's future and we are delighted to have extended his contract."

Source: Bath Rugby

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Thursday, 25 April 2013

Bath Rugby sign England U20's duo

Bath Rugby are pleased to confirm that England U20 duo Anthony Watson and David Sisi will be joining the Club next season.

The young stars both played in the dramatic victory over Wales U20 in March that saw the English side successfully defend their RBS 6 Nations crown.
At 6'4" and 120kg, back-rower Sisi, 20, has tremendous physical presence, and proved at international age group level that he is also a good reader of the game with excellent ball skills. He will slot into a powerful back-row contingent at Bath, and is expected to learn a huge amount from the likes of Springbok Francois Louw.

Watson, 19, is a fullback with exceptional speed and footwork, and regularly showed real attacking flair in his time with England U20. Fast and elusive, the Bath coaches are keen to develop his exceptional talent and are convinced he will learn from the experienced backs around him.

Speaking of the signings, Bath Head Coach Gary Gold said: "Anthony and David are outstanding players with real potential for the long-term. We feel that by bringing them into this environment we will really see them develop and bring out the best in them. Young, English talent is a big part of our thinking, and we see these young men as investments for the future. We are delighted to have secured them both."

Source: Bath Rugby

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Tuesday, 23 April 2013

Bath Rugby young guns extend deals

Bath Rugby are delighted to announce that young stars Ollie Devoto and Tom Dunn have signed new Academy contracts with the Club.

Devoto, 19, played in the England U20 side that won this year's RBS 6 Nations title and is viewed as an exciting prospect for the future. He is an outstanding fly-half who has also started the last three matches at fullback, looking every inch a Premiership player. An impressive kicker with a big boot out of hand and tremendous goal kicking potential, he has shown plenty to excite the coaches both in training and matches.

Dunn, 20, started this season as a University Scholar and has seen some fine performances rewarded with a senior Academy contract. His switch from prop to hooker this season has seen him excel in his new role, making seven first team appearances. An explosive ball carrier with a great work ethic, he is widely regarded as a young player with huge promise.

Danny Grewcock, Academy Director, said of the signings: "It's great news that both Ollie and Tom have agreed new deals. They are both working very hard to become first team regulars for Bath, and their respective attitudes are exceptional. They aspire to be regular members of the senior squad here, and they both have the potential to achieve that."

Bath Rugby CEO Nick Blofeld said: "We are investing in the future and we do want young, local players to be a core part of that. As and when we need to fill any gaps in the squad we will, but to have such talent as Ollie and Tom coming through our Academy is great for the Club. We are delighted to have them on board alongside other regular first team players who have come through the Academy such as Ben Williams, Guy Mercer and Nathan Catt."

Source: Bath Rugby

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Monday, 22 April 2013

A thank you from Nick Blofeld

Dear all,

Following a great win over the old rivals Leicester on Saturday, I really wanted to thank all of our supporters for making the atmosphere so incredible. It was a committed, determined and passionate performance from the team, and I am in no doubt that the sheer volume and energy emanating from the stands helped the players. It was also good to have so many past players with us on Saturday to enjoy it.

We still have one extremely important game to go against Saracens, and we know the team will give it everything but, as Saturday was our last home game this season, I wanted take this opportunity to thank you for all the support you've given us since September.

We are very lucky to have such loyal supporters, and we hope for many more occasions like Saturday in the near future.
From everyone at the Club, thank you.

Nick Blofeld.

Source: Bath Rugby

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Saracens v Bath Rugby to be broadcast live

Bath Rugby's final game of the Aviva Premiership season will be broadcast live on Sky Sports.
Bath, who are still in the hunt for a Heineken Cup spot following the bonus point victory over Leicester Tigers last weekend, travel to league leaders Saracens on Saturday 4th May, kick-off 14.30.

There are just a few hundred tickets left for the game, available from the Saracens Ticket Office, and the boys will need all your support for this final push of the year.

The other games being broadcast see Harlequins and Northampton Saints in a tussle for Top Four seeding, whilst Gloucester travel to Exeter Chiefs – both set on securing top flight European rugby for 2013/14.

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Gavin Henson: Bath in talks with London Welsh fly-half

Bath have confirmed they are in talks with Wales international Gavin Henson over a possible move to the Rec.

Henson is currently under contract at London Welsh, who have been relegated from the Premiership.

Capped 33 times for his country, the versatile 31-year-old made his name with the Ospreys before short spells with Saracens, Toulon and Cardiff.

He joined the Exiles last summer, but injury has restricted him to only 11 appearances this season.
A move to Bath could see the double Six Nations Grand Slam-winner playing at inside centre because of the progress made by young Scotland fly-half Tom Heathcote.


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Sunday, 21 April 2013

Bath 27 Leicester 26: Tigers stunned as captain Louw seals dramatic win

Bath produced their finest display of the Gary Gold era to stun Leicester Tigers with a bonus-point victory at The Rec.

Leciester were under the cosh, but led 26-19 with just minutes left. This was until Anthony Perenise's magnificent one-handed pass released Francois Louw down the touchline.

The Springbok held off the desperate scrambled defence to swallow-dive into the corner. In a gladiatorial performance befitting of the Roman city, Bath's five points converted their seemingly Heineken Cup mission impossible, into mission implausible.

Bath coach Mike Ford said: 'Leicester are the league's best attacking team so we knew we had to play with tempo. Our setpiece was exceptional. Davey Wilson and Paul James were magnificent at the scrum while Wilson also carried superbly.
'We were determined not to waste 40 weeks' work and not qualify for Europe. We can still do it but must beat Saracens.'


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Friday, 19 April 2013

Players leaving Bath Rugby...

Bath Rugby can today confirm that the following players will all be leaving the Club at the end of the season:

Michael Claassens (162 appearances)
Jack Cuthbert (96 appearances)
Stephen Donald (33 appearances)
Mark McMillan (46 appearances)
Ben Skirving (101 appearances)
Simon Taylor (65 appearances)
Sam Vesty (64 appearances)

*appearances to date

Commenting on the departures, Bath Rugby Head Coach, Gary Gold, said: "We would like to thank all these players for their commitment and hard-work in their time at Bath Rugby, and wish them all the very best in the next stages of their careers."

Source: Bath Rugby

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Bath Rugby team to face Leicester Tigers

15. Ollie Devoto
14. Semesa Rokoduguni
13. Ben Williams
12. Kyle Eastmond
11. Horacio Agulla
10. Stephen Donald
9. Michael Claassens
1. Paul James
2. Rob Webber
3. David Wilson
4. Dominic Day
5. Dave Attwood
6. Francois Louw ( c )
7. Guy Mercer
8. Simon Taylor


16. Eusebio Guinazu
17. Nathan Catt
18. Anthony Perenise
19. Will Spencer
20. Mat Gilbert
21. Nick Koster
22. Peter Stringer
23. Tom Heathcote

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Gary Gold: Bath coach takes blame for Premiership failures

Bath head coach Gary Gold says he accepts the blame for their "disappointing" Premiership campaign.

The West Country club, who have never won the league in the professional era, are currently seventh in the table and 11 points from the play-offs.

South African Gold, in his first season in charge at the Rec, told BBC Radio Bristol: "We've been disappointing by our own standards.

"I take full responsibility. We could have been in a much better position."


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Wednesday, 17 April 2013

Francois Louw does not fear Bath Rugby's unenviable end-of-season schedule

Nobody in the Aviva Premiership is looking at Bath Rugby’s end-of-season run in with envy, but Francois Louw insists the club are not about to feel sorry for themselves.

Gary Gold’s side find themselves with plenty to play for in their final two league games and currently sitting seventh, two points adrift of Exeter Chiefs and the final Heineken Cup spot.

But the fixture gods have not exactly been kind to them, with Bath having to play the last three Premiership champions in their final games.


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Sunday, 14 April 2013

Bath Rugby head coach Gary Gold not giving up on top-six finish despite loss at Harlequins

Bath Rugby head coach Gary Gold was left counting the cost of two second-half errors after his side went down 23-9 at Harlequins.

England internationals Danny Care and Ugo Monye cashed in to score the game’s two tries and leave Bath outside the Aviva Premiership’s top six with only next Saturday’s home game against Leicester and a trip to leaders Saracens remaining this term.

Gold said: " I thought the guys showed a huge amount of character throughout the whole game really and you can see the intent was to come out here and ask questions of a very good Quins team and try and keep the ball in hand.


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Wednesday, 10 April 2013

Claassens confirms Bath Rugby departure

Michael Claassens has today confirmed that he will be leaving Bath Rugby at the end of the season.

The 30 year-old scrum-half has been with the West Country side for six years, making over 160 appearances and scoring over 150 points to date in that time.
Known for his sniping breaks, physicality around the field and poacher's instinct for the try-line, Claassens has been an ever-present on the Bath teamsheet in the last few seasons. Just 12 of his appearances in six seasons have been from the bench, and he came close to beating the Aviva Premiership record for the most consecutive appearances in the league but for an untimely hamstring injury.


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Tuesday, 9 April 2013

Stringer commits to Bath Rugby

Bath Rugby are delighted to confirm that 98 times capped Irish international scrum-half Peter Stringer has signed a new extension to keep him at the Club next season.

The hugely talented and experienced Peter was originally brought in as injury cover for Michael Claassens, but has since gone on to make the starting number 9 shirt his own, bringing punchy delivery of the ball, tenacity at the breakdown and quick-thinking to the field.
Speaking of his decision, Peter said: "I still feel like I have a lot to give on the rugby field, and really wanted to keep on playing, so was happy to agree a new contract here. I've really enjoyed my time with Bath so far, and am looking forward to next season already."

Bath Head Coach, Gary Gold, added: "Strings has been fantastic for us in the short time he has been here so far, so we're really pleased he's agreed to stay here for next season rather than going back to Ireland. He is the consummate professional in everything he does, both on and off the field, and that sets a great example for the entire squad."

Source: Bath Rugby

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Monday, 8 April 2013

Record £2.8 million loss for Bath Rugby

Bath Rugby made a record loss in the last year, new figures show.

The club has reported a loss, after tax, of £2.789 million, for the year to June 2012.

Its losses have increased each year since it last turned in a profit, 2005/6, with a deficit of £1.82 million in 2009/10.

The Old MillView Details
Its financial results show that owner Bruce Craig agreed a £7.1 million loan at the end of June, after lending the club £4.765 million the previous year.

Pharmaceutical magnate Mr Craig bought the club in 2010 and is its sole shareholder.

The directors’ report accompanying the results says the loss is in line with expectations.


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Bath Rugby remain hopeful of Heineken Cup qualification despite Amlin exit

First-team coach Toby Booth says Bath Rugby are still targeting a return to the Heineken Cup, despite seeing those aspirations suffer a setback on Saturday.

Bath were knocked out of the Amlin Cup after falling to a 36-20 quarter-final defeat at home to Stade Francais at the weekend.

With the winners of that competition guaranteeing their place in next season’s Heineken Cup, Bath must instead rely on their final placing in the Aviva Premiership to return to Europe’s top-tier event for 2013-14.


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Saturday, 6 April 2013

Bath react after spitting incicent

Bath scrum-half Peter Stringer was furious after he was spat on by Stade Francais' Jerome Fillol during the English side's 36-20 defeat in the Amlin Challenge Cup quarter final.

The two scrum-halves clashed before a scrum in the 25th minute. Nothing untoward was seen by referee Nigel Owens and his assistants at the time, but replays showed Fillol spitting straight in Stringer's face.

Fillol is almost certain to be cited, given the damning nature of the video footage, and could face a lengthy ban.

Former Ireland scrum-half Stringer said: "Obviously it is a bit raw at the moment, but it happened on the pitch and there is no place in the game for it.


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Friday, 5 April 2013

Bath Rugby team to face Stade Francais

15. Ollie Devoto
14. Nick Abendanon
13. Horacio Agulla
12. Kyle Eastmond
11. Tom Biggs
10. Stephen Donald
9. Peter Stringer
1. Paul James
2. Rob Webber
3. David Wilson
4. Stuart Hooper ( c )
5. Dominic Day
6. Simon Taylor
7. Francois Louw
8. Ben Skirving


16. Ross Batty
17. Nathan Catt
18. Anthony Perenise
19. Will Spencer
20. Nick Koster
21. Michael Claassens
22. Tom Heathcote
23. Jack Cuthbert

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Thursday, 4 April 2013

Peter Stringer has no need for extra Amlin Challenge Cup incentive

Peter Stringer says the prospect of playing in a European final in Dublin does not add any extra personal incentive to Bath Rugby’s Amlin Cup campaign.

The 98-cap Ireland international won two Heineken Cups with Munster at the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff and could bring up a hat-trick of continental victories in May when Ireland holds its first European finals in a decade.

Leinster’s RDS Arena will host this year’s Amlin Cup final, with the Heineken Cup showpiece staged a mile up the road at the Aviva Stadium the following day.


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Day of celebration for Bath Rugby clash with Stade Francais

Bath Rugby is sending out a rallying cry for people to paint the city blue, black and white with a day of celebrations as they take on Stade Francais at the weekend.

The Rec will be brought to life with music, sport, dancing, food and drink on Saturday afternoon and evening in a bid to get the city’s residents behind their rugby team for one of the most anticipated games of the season.

Before the Amlin Challenge Cup quarter-final kicks off at 1pm, a military band will be entertaining the crowds as they make their way into the ground through the riverside gate.


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Changes pay off but more still expected

Bath Rugby's team selection for Saturday's clash with London Welsh posed a few head-scratchers when it was released 24 hours before kick-off.

Fijian Semesa Rokoduguni and Academy player Ollie Devoto were both named in a much-changed back-line for the visit of the Aviva Premiership's bottom side.

Instead of any lack of respect towards Welsh, however, the changes made by head coach Gary Gold were as a result of below-par showings in Bath's previous two matches.


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Wednesday, 3 April 2013

Bath Rugby announce signing of Matt Garvey

Promising young English forward Matt Garvey will join Bath Rugby at the beginning of next season, the Club are pleased to confirm.

Capable of covering both lock and back row, Garvey has been one of the Aviva Premiership's stand out players over the last two seasons, combining size and power with running lines that have made him a player to watch for defences around the country.

Speaking of his recent signing, Garvey said: "Bath is a great Club and an incredible set up. I know that the environment there is a tough one, but I am sure it is also one that will make all of us better players. I look forward to joining the squad, and to testing myself amongst the players there and fighting for a place in the team."

Gary Gold, Bath Head Coach, said: "Matt is an excellent player and one we are extremely happy to have secured. He is a big unit and can do the rough stuff, but he can also offer a real threat in attack. We look forward to welcoming him to Bath."

Source: Bath Rugby

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Monday, 1 April 2013

Donald to leave Bath Rugby at end of season

Bath Rugby can today confirm that Stephen Donald will be leaving the Club at the end of the season to join Japanese side, Mitsubishi Dynaboars.

The fly-half arrived at the West Country side shortly after kicking the winning penalty in the World Cup final for the All Blacks in November 2011. He has since gone on to make 31 appearances to date, scoring over 150 points, and cementing his reputation for being able to control a game from 10 with his ability to get a backline firing.

Speaking of his decision, Stephen said: "I've had a great time with Bath, but feel it is time for a new challenge in a new league. I'd like to thank everyone at the Club and all the Bath supporters for all the support during my time here, and I'm really looking forward to doing all I can to help us end this season on a high."

Bath Head Coach, Gary Gold, added: "Steve is a good footballer and is a great character to have around. He has brought a lot of experience to the squad in the last couple of years, and we wish him all the best of luck in Japan next season."

Source: Bath Rugby

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Stuart Barnes re-signs for Bath Rugby...

Bath Rugby have swooped for the signing of Stuart Barnes. After Donald picked up an injury on Saturday, Gary Gold feels Stuarts experience and expertise will help develop Tom Heathcoat in Donald's absence.

Bath Rugby have had a chance to catch up with Barnes and get his reaction to the new deal,

'It was a really hard decision to leave Sky Sports, but when an opportunity like this comes knocking its hard to say no. I feel like this will be my last chance to pull on the Blue Black and White, at 79 I am not getting any younger.'

Gary Gold was over the moon with his latest signing after fighting off completion from 'Bath Care Home RFC' and 'War Veterans RFC'

'We are really happy to have Stuart back in the team, we have thought carefully about how to develop young Heathcoat and this was a collective decision by the coaching team. We have consulted a number of doctors and specialists at the Circle in Bath and have a very structured plan for his return to the field.'

Bath Rugby Inside Out are lead to believe Stuart will be available for selection this weekend against Stade. He is expected to be bought on as a 'super sub' at around the 79minute mark.

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