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Bath Rugby seal bonus-point victory over Bristol Bears at Twickenham

Bath Rugby 26 v Bristol Bears 19

Bath Rugby claimed a bonus-point 26-19 victory over West Country rivals Bristol Bears in front of a crowd of 60,152 at Twickenham Stadium. 

It could not have been a better start for Bath Rugby, as they took the lead through a Jonathan Joseph score after just two minutes. Bristol looked to play from deep and Bath capitalised on a loose pass, which secured an attacking five metre scrum. From the set piece, Kahn Fotuali’i spotted numbers out wide with Rhys Priestland picking out Joseph on his outside. The centre skipped around the Bristol defence and buried his way over the line. Priestland converted from out wide to give Bath the early lead. [7-0]

Bristol responded with some attacking flair of their own, which resulted in their first points of the afternoon. After Bath were penalised for offside, Callum Sheedy kicked over a straight forward penalty from in front of the posts. [7-3]

It didn’t take long for Bath to get back on the scoreboard, with Ruaridh McConnochie rising highest to win back possession from straight from the restart. The backs worked their magic once again and Joseph turned from try scorer to provider, with a clever kick in behind the Bears defence. Jamie Roberts watched the ball patiently before collecting to score Bath’s second of the afternoon. Priestland’s kick drifted wide of the uprights. [12-3] 

Bath made it three tries with just 22 minutes on the clock. A scrum in the midfield saw Zach Mercer sear through the Bears' defensive line. Fellow back rower Sam Underhill was on his shoulder and a clever offload sent him deep inside the 22. The Bristol defence regathered, but Bath maintained composure deep in the 22. It was Joe Cokanasiga with the finishing touch, as the winger powered his way over from close range. Priestland added the extras to give his side a 16-point advantage. [19-3]

Bristol made Bath pay in the closing 10 minutes of the half conceding a number of penalties. Bristol were able to reduce arrears through the boot of Sheedy, who scored three successful penalties to take the sides into the interval closely poised at 19-12. 

Half time – Bath Rugby 19-12 Bristol Bears 

It was a tentative opening to the second half at Twickenham, with neither side able to make any headway into the opposition territory. 

The deadlock was finally broken with 56 minutes played. Bristol looked to play the ball from inside their half, but it cost them dearly. Priestland got his boot on to a loose pass just outside the Bristol 22 and gave chase towards the try line. The fly-half finished off a try out of nothing to secure a bonus-point for the Blue, Black and White. The fly-half converted his own try to extend his side's lead to 14. [26-12]

With a large share of possession, Bristol continued to test the resolve of the Bath defence. With just over 10 minutes to play, Bristol reduced the gap with their second of the afternoon. Quick hands saw the Bears mount an attack on the left wing, and the numbers out wide proved pivotal. Alapati Leiua sent Dan Thomas clear, with the flanker charging down the touchline to run in for a vital score. The successful conversion put the visitors to within a score. [26-19]

However, Bristol were unable to bridge the gap on their local rivals and Bath came away with the victory that takes them up to sixth in the Gallagher Premiership. 

Full-time - Bath Rugby 26-19 Bristol Bears 

Match details

Twickenham
Gallagher Premiership
6 April 2019
KO 14:00

Attendance: 60,152
Referee: JP Doyle
Half Time score: 19-12

Bath:
Tries: Joseph (1), Roberts (9), Cokanasiga (21), Priestland (55)
Conversions: Priestland (2, 22, 56)
Bristol:
Tries: Thomas (69)
Conversions: Madigan (70)
Penalties: Sheedy (7, 30, 34, 40)

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MATCH STARTS

Match underway between Bath and Bristol.

2'

Try for Bath! Bath 5 - 0 Bristol

Jonathan Joseph scores for Bath.

3'

Conversion! Bath 7 - 0 Bristol

Rhys Priestland with a conversion for Bath.

8'

Penalty Goal! Bath 7 - 3 Bristol

Callum Sheedy kicks a penalty goal for Bristol.

10'

Try for Bath! Bath 12 - 3 Bristol

Jamie Roberts scores for Bath.

22'

Try for Bath! Bath 17 - 3 Bristol

Joe Cokanasiga scores for Bath.

23'

Conversion! Bath 19 - 3 Bristol

Rhys Priestland with a conversion for Bath.

23'

Substitution

Tusi Pisi replaces Luke Daniels for Bristol.

31'

Penalty Goal! Bath 19 - 6 Bristol

Callum Sheedy kicks a penalty goal for Bristol.

35'

Penalty Goal! Bath 19 - 9 Bristol

Callum Sheedy kicks a penalty goal for Bristol.

41'

Penalty Goal! Bath 19 - 12 Bristol

Callum Sheedy kicks a penalty goal for Bristol.

41'

HALF TIME

Match score: Bath 19 - 12 Bristol.

SECOND HALF STARTS

We’re underway again.

41'

Substitution

Jack Lam replaces Jordan Crane for Bristol.

41'

Substitution

Max Clark replaces Joe Cokanasiga for Bath.

48'

Substitution

Ian Madigan replaces Luke Morahan for Bristol.

53'

Substitution

James Lay replaces Jake Woolmore for Bristol.

53'

Substitution

George Smith replaces Ed Holmes for Bristol.

56'

Try for Bath! Bath 24 - 12 Bristol

Rhys Priestland scores for Bath.

57'

Conversion! Bath 26 - 12 Bristol

Rhys Priestland with a conversion for Bath.

57'

Substitution

Chris Cook replaces Kahn Fotuali'i for Bath.

62'

Substitution

Andy Uren replaces Harry Randall for Bristol.

62'

Substitution

Ross Batty replaces Tom Dunn for Bath.

62'

Substitution

Beno Obano replaces Nathan Catt for Bath.

62'

Substitution

Anthony Perenise replaces Max Lahiff for Bath.

62'

Substitution

Elliott Stooke replaces Tom Ellis for Bath.

62'

Substitution

Miles Reid replaces Sam Underhill for Bath.

70'

Try for Bristol! Bath 26 - 17 Bristol

Daniel Thomas scores for Bristol.

71'

Conversion! Bath 26 - 19 Bristol

Ian Madigan with a conversion for Bristol.

71'

Substitution

Lewis Thiede replaces John Afoa for Bristol.

71'

Substitution

Freddie Burns replaces Rhys Priestland for Bath.

75'

Substitution

Nic Fenton-Wells replaces Harry Thacker for Bristol.

81'

Substitution

Tom Dunn replaces Ross Batty for Bath.

83'

FULL TIME! It’s a win for Bath.

Final score: Bath 26 - 19 Bristol.

Bath Player Scorecard
NameTriesConvPenDropPts
Rhys Priestland130011
Jamie Roberts10005
Jonathan Joseph10005
Joe Cokanasiga10005
Bristol Player Scorecard
NameTriesConvPenDropPts
Callum Sheedy004012
Daniel Thomas10005
Ian Madigan01002
Bath v Bristol
P D C T Pos Player   Player Pos T C D P
    PNathan
Catt
1Jake
Woolmore
P    
    HTom
Dunn
2Harry
Thacker
H    
    PMax
Lahiff
3John
Afoa
P    
    LDave
Attwood
4Ed
Holmes
L    
    LCharlie
Ewels
5Christopher
Vui
L    
    FLTom
Ellis
6Steven
Luatua
FL    
    FLSam
Underhill
7Daniel
Thomas
FL1   
    8Zach
Mercer
8Jordan
Crane
8    
    SHKahn
Fotuali'i
9Harry
Randall
SH    
  31FHRhys
Priestland
10Callum
Sheedy
FH   4
    WRuaridh
McConnochie
11Alapati
Leiua
W    
   1CJamie
Roberts
12Siale
Piutau
C    
   1CJonathan
Joseph
13Piers
O'Conor
C    
   1WJoe
Cokanasiga
14Luke
Morahan
W    
    FBTom
Homer
15Luke
Daniels
FB    
Replacements
    RHRoss
Batty
16Nic
Fenton-Wells
RH    
    RPBeno
Obano
17James
Lay
RP    
    RPAnthony
Perenise
18Lewis
Thiede
RP    
    RFLElliott
Stooke
19Jack
Lam
R8    
    RFLMiles
Reid
20George
Smith
RL    
    RSHChris
Cook
21Andy
Uren
RSH    
    RFHFreddie
Burns
22Ian
Madigan
RW 1  
    RWMax
Clark
23Tusi
Pisi
RFB