Friday night’s Heineken Champions Cup fixture against Harlequins saw debuts on the European stage for homegrown Bath Rugby Pathway and Academy graduates Tom de Glanville, Nahum Merigan and a superb try scoring return to the competition for Gabriel Hamer-Webb.
The next group of potential homegrown Bath Rugby players got ready for their own challenge away from home to face London Irish in the Premiership Rugby U18s Academy League.
It was a hard-fought game which saw the young side learn and adapt, adopting different systems as they faced a physical London Irish side. The 29-17 result, alongside the two recent wins against Exeter and Saracens, will provide many opportunities to learn as they head into their next challenge when they welcome Harlequins next weekend.
The young Blue, Black and White’s crossed the whitewash on three occasions courtesy of captain Orlando Bailey, and forwards Ewan Richards and Frankie Read.
Bath Rugby U18s led 12-10 at the break after a closely fought encounter, in which the young men used their systems and powerful forward game to gain an advantage at the break.
The second-half saw a turn in context of the game as London Irish began to gain a foot hold. Four second-half tries sealed the tie for the hosts after a thrilling test for the young Bath side.
This game follows on from two outstanding performances and wins against Exeter and Saracens, two of the best southern-based sides in the country, not only at Academy level but at the top of the game. These performances have provided the side with a platform to build upon for the remainder of the Premiership Rugby U18s League season.
Next up for the Blue, Black and White is a stern test against Harlequins, where they take on the London-based side at Wootton Bassett RFC on Saturday 18th January.