London Irish A ran-out 7-64 winners over a young Bath United side in the Premiership Rugby A League this evening.
The experienced visitors controlled the game from kick-off, using their forward power to drive over the line after nine minutes. They turned down a kickable penalty, instead going to the corner, and the resulting maul saw Lovejoy Chawatama touch down under a pile of bodies. Theo Brophy-Clews added the conversion. 0-7.
Winger Ben Loader showed excellent footwork 10 minutes later, dancing through the United line to draw the defenders in. The gap created allowed Matt Williams to dart through and sprint away to score. 0-12.
The set-piece was hugely effect, and another strong driving maul saw Josh Basham touch down from metres out. Brophy-Clews was again on target with the conversion. 0-19.
With just under 10 minutes left of the half, United worked their way over the try line. A penalty from the scrum was dispatched to touch, and the well-taken lineout set-up a series of pick and goes in the Irish 22 that saw Cinderford RFC back-row Lewis Beer burrow over from short-range. Josh Lewis added the conversion. 7-19.
But Irish hit back almost straight away, scrum-half Rory Brand latching on to the end of a Ben Ransom break. Brophy-Clews hit his mark for the conversion.
Half-time: Bath United 7 – London Irish A 26
Irish continued to control the game through their physical advantage and experience in the second-half, employing the set-piece to particular effect. Basham was on the end of another driving maul to score early after the game had re-started, and then winger Tom Parton scored a quick-fire double, of which Brophy-Clews converted one. 7-45.
Brand added a stereotypical scrum-half’s try on 65 minutes, sniping over from the bottom of a ruck to take the visitors over 50 points on the scoreboard, before replacement Jacob Atkins scythed through the defence to cross.
United battled hard, keeping their heads up and looking to create opportunities, but the last play was with Irish – Parton bringing up his hat-trick after a neat one-two with Atkins down the wing. Brophy-Clews added the extras to round off the scoring.
Final score: Bath United 7 – London Irish A 64