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Bath Rugby 6, Leicester Tigers 6

The England international flanker, who has been in impressive form this season, fell awkwardly at a maul in slippy conditions in the opening exchanges of a soggy match in Bath before being stretchered from the field and taken to hospital for X-rays. Lipman's injury is a massive blow for John Connolly's side whose injury list is probably the greatest in the Premiership these days.

Both sides were minus their international stars, but it was the weather that was to have the biggest impact. It had been raining in the West Country since mid morning and in tricky conditions the game got off to the worst possible start for the home side when Michael Lipman was forced out of the game.

On a night where every opportunity to kick at goal was going to be crucial, Andy Goode missed a penalty for the visitors before Chris Malone slotted over a kick after some pressure from the Bath forwards inside the Leicester half led to the Premiership leaders conceding a penalty.

Leicester's response was almost immediate. Henry Tuilagi made a forceful break into the Bath half, but with the line beckoning the Leicester backs failed to make the last pass count and the home side were let off the hook. Leicester though were building and the Tigers soon capitalised when Andy Goode struck a drop goal to level the game in the 28th minute before giving Leicester the lead soon after when he landed a forty metre penalty.

Bath weathered the storm (quite literally) and came back into the game when Malone slotted over a second penalty after Beattie was judged to have been impeded by Martin Johnson after Malone fly-hacked on deep inside the Leicester half.

The second half provided some admirable moments of flair from both sides, but it was an evening for defences and for forwards. England A squad member Andy Higgins made a fine break after Martin Johnson's poor ball retention inside the Bath twenty-two but as Bath began to get into the ascendancy Malone missed a difficult chance to give Bath the lead in the fiftieth minute with a long-range penalty and a further effort seven minutes later

Bath's scrum has been nothing short of formidable in recent weeks and with a solid platform to work from the Bath forwards began to make their impact. However, centres Alex Crockett and Andy Higgins were forced from the field prompting a serious reshuffle in the back line and some of the impetus was lost for a while.

As the pitch began to resemble a ploughed field with every passing minute, the match became a lottery. However, the home side had to weather one last storm from the Leicester forwards to settle for a well-deserved draw.

Bath Rugby: 15 Matt Perry 9 *, 14 Andy Williams, 13 Andrew Higgins (Kieron Lewitt), 12 Alex Crockett (Tom Cheeseman), 11 Joe Maddock, 10 Chris Malone (2p), 9 Nick Walshe (Martyn Wood), 1 Matt Stevens *, 2 Lee Mears, 3 Duncan Bell (Chris Loader), 4 James Hudson, 5 Rob Fidler *, 6 Andy Beattie (capt), 7 Michael Lipman (James Scaysbrook rep Geraint Lewis)) *, 8 Zak Feaunati *

Reps: 16 Jonathan Humphreys *, 17 Chris Loader *, 18 James Scaysbrook, 19 Geraint Lewis, 20 Martyn Wood *, 21 Kieron Lewitt, 22 Tom Cheeseman

Leicester Tigers: 15. Sam Vesty, 14. , 13. Ollie Smith, 12. Daryl Gibson, 11. John Holtby, 10. Andy Goode (1p, 1dg), 9. Scott Bemand, 1. Michael Holford (Rawson), 2. George Chuter, 3. Darren Morriss, 4. Martin Johnson, 5. Louis Deacon, 6. Henry Tuilagi (Deacon), 7. Neil Back, 8. Will Johnson

Replacements: 16. Ephraim Taukafa, 17. John Rawson, 18 Brett Deacon, 19 Daniel Montagu, 20 Brett Deacon, 21 Leon Lloyd, 22 Alex Tuilagi

Att: 10,500
Ref: Dave Rose (RFU)

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