Bristol Bears A see off Bath United at Clifton RFC

Bristol Bears A secured a 30-21 victory over Bath United in a physical contest in the opening fixture of the Premiership Rugby Shield at Clifton RFC. 

Bristol were the dominant force in the first half, with fly-half Tiff Eden scoring two early penalties, to give his side a 6-0 lead after nine minutes.

The visitors battled back and scored the opening try of the match, with Ruaridh McConnochie touching down on his first appearance in the Blue, Black and White. It was de Glanville who provided the opening, dummying his man inside the 22, before offloading to the winger to score in the corner. Alex Davies added the extras from the touchline to put Bath into the lead with 20 minutes on the clock. 6-7

Eight minutes later, Bristol got themselves back in front with a well-worked move down the left wing. Tom Pincus combined well with Sam Graham on the touchline, before the back rower sent through the impressive Harry Randall over the whitewash. Eden made it a seven-point score from the boot. 13-7

Two minutes after the try, Bath were reduced to 14 men with Michael van Vuuren seeing yellow for a deliberate knock-on. Bristol made the man advantage count, as they put another try on the scoreboard through Joe Joyce. A powerful scrum saw Bristol overturn possession and Joyce was on hand to dive over from close range.

Half-time - Bristol Bears A 20-7 Bath United 

Bath reduced arrears two minutes into the second half, with replacement Rhys Davies crashing over in the corner. Alex Davies made it a seven-point score with the touchline conversion. 20-14

Bristol continued to use their pack to good effect, and were rewarded with 53 minutes on the clock. Following a number of collapsed scrums, the referee was left with no choice but to award the penalty try. 27-14

The tries continued to flood in, and it was Bath, who got within six points of their West Country neighbours. A well-worked catch and drive from the line-out was finished off well by University of Bath captain Tom Doughty. 27-21

Bath continued to search for the match-winning try, but Eden ensured the points would go the way of the hosts. The fly-half calmly slotted another penalty to give his side a two-score advantage going into the last seven minutes.

Full-time – Bristol Bears ‘A’ 30-21 Bath United

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