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Wasps see off Bath Rugby in nine-try thriller

Bath Rugby 26 v Wasps 31

Bath Rugby ended 2017 with a nine-try thriller, but couldn’t stop Wasps from securing a 26-31 victory at the Rec.

Wasps were quickly out of the blocks with a try after just eight minutes. It came after sustained pressure from the in-form side, which was finished off in the corner by Marcus Watson. Danny Cipriani added the conversion to make it a seven-point score. 0-7.

The waves of attack continued, and the visitors doubled their lead less than 10 minutes later, with scrum-half Dan Robson darting through the Bath defence to score from close range. 0-14.

It got even better for the men in white, who added their third try of the evening soon after, with Watson crossing for his second of the game after good work from Thomas Young and Robson on the overlap. 0-19.

The game turned Bath’s way 10 minutes from the interval, when Watson was sin-binned for a deliberate knock-on. A man to the good, the Blue, Black and White made the numbers count with their first try under the Friday night lights. A strong scrum from the pack gave Kahn Fotuali’i good ball, and the scrum-half sent his half-back partner Rhys Priestland through the gap to score. The fly-half converted his own try to reduce the gap to 12 points. 7-19.

With the clock running into the red, Bath scored a quick-fire second try through Jack Wilson. The winger collected the ball on the right wing, and fended off the attentions of Robson to send his side into the half-time break just five points adrift.

Half-time: Bath Rugby 14-19 Wasps

Three minutes into the second-half Wasps secured the bonus point, with their fourth try of the evening. Robson was the architect of the move, picking up from the back of the ruck before sending Juan De Jongh in for a simple run-in. 14-26.

Bath weren’t going to give up without a fight, and their patience was rewarded when Paul Grant crossed the whitewash with just under 30 minutes to play. The openside flanker used every ounce of energy to reach for the line, and after consultation with the TMO, the try was awarded. 19-26.

The flurry of tries kept coming, as Wasps hit back through Gaby Lovobalavu, who took Willie Le Roux’s pass in his stride to score in the corner. 19-31.

With 17 minutes to play, Bath were handed a lifeline when Le Roux was shown the yellow card for offside. Once again, Bath made the numerical advantage work in their favour, as Zach Mercer powered his way over the try line. The number eight held off two Wasps defenders to score under the posts and take the game into a nail-biting final 15 minutes. 26-31.

Wasps showed their experience keeping ball in hand for large parts of the final quarter, and despite the best efforts of the Blue, Black and White, Bath had to settle for two bonus points. 

Final score: Bath Rugby 26-31 Wasps.  

Match details

Recreation Ground
Aviva Premiership
29 December 2017
KO 19:45

Attendance: 14,509
Referee: Luke Pearce
Half Time score: 14-19

Bath:
Tries: Priestland (33), Wilson (39), Grant (52), Mercer (63)
Conversions: Priestland (34, 40, 64)
Wasps:
Tries: Watson (7, 22), Robson (16), De Jongh (41), Lovobalavu (56)
Conversions: Cipriani (8, 17, 42)

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MATCH STARTS

Match underway between Bath and Wasps.

8'

Try for Wasps! Bath 0 - 5 Wasps

Marcus Watson scores for Wasps.

9'

Conversion! Bath 0 - 7 Wasps

Danny Cipriani with a conversion for Wasps.

17'

Try for Wasps! Bath 0 - 12 Wasps

Dan Robson scores for Wasps.

18'

Conversion! Bath 0 - 14 Wasps

Danny Cipriani with a conversion for Wasps.

23'

Try for Wasps! Bath 0 - 19 Wasps

Marcus Watson scores for Wasps.

24'

Substitution

Elliott Stooke replaces Charlie Ewels for Bath.

29'

Yellow Card!

Wasps lose Marcus Watson for ten minutes.

34'

Try for Bath! Bath 5 - 19 Wasps

Rhys Priestland scores for Bath.

35'

Conversion! Bath 7 - 19 Wasps

Rhys Priestland with a conversion for Bath.

40'

Try for Bath! Bath 12 - 19 Wasps

Jack Wilson scores for Bath.

41'

Conversion! Bath 14 - 19 Wasps

Rhys Priestland with a conversion for Bath.

41'

HALF TIME

Match score: Bath 14 - 19 Wasps.

SECOND HALF STARTS

We’re underway again.

42'

Try for Wasps! Bath 14 - 24 Wasps

Juan De Jongh scores for Wasps.

43'

Conversion! Bath 14 - 26 Wasps

Danny Cipriani with a conversion for Wasps.

53'

Try for Bath! Bath 19 - 26 Wasps

Paul Grant scores for Bath.

54'

Substitution

Ashley Johnson replaces Tom Cruse for Wasps.

54'

Substitution

Max Lahiff replaces Henry Thomas for Bath.

57'

Try for Wasps! Bath 19 - 31 Wasps

Gaby Lovobalavu scores for Wasps.

59'

Substitution

Marty Moore replaces Jake Cooper-Woolley for Wasps.

59'

Substitution

James Gaskell replaces Kearnan Myall for Wasps.

64'

Yellow Card!

Wasps lose Willie Le Roux for ten minutes.

64'

Try for Bath! Bath 24 - 31 Wasps

Zach Mercer scores for Bath.

65'

Conversion! Bath 26 - 31 Wasps

Rhys Priestland with a conversion for Bath.

66'

Substitution

Chris Cook replaces Kahn Fotuali'i for Bath.

66'

Substitution

Guy Thompson replaces James Haskell for Wasps.

66'

Substitution

Lucas Noguera Paz replaces Beno Obano for Bath.

71'

Substitution

Ben Harris replaces Simon McIntyre for Wasps.

71'

Substitution

James Phillips replaces Elliott Stooke for Bath.

75'

Substitution

Joe Simpson replaces Dan Robson for Wasps.

81'

FULL TIME! It’s a win for Wasps.

Final score: Bath 26 - 31 Wasps.

Bath Player Scorecard
NameTriesConvPenDropPts
Rhys Priestland130011
Paul Grant10005
Zach Mercer10005
Jack Wilson10005
Wasps Player Scorecard
NameTriesConvPenDropPts
Marcus Watson200010
Danny Cipriani03006
Dan Robson10005
Gaby Lovobalavu10005
Juan De Jongh10005
Bath v Wasps
P D C T Pos Player   Player Pos T C D P
    PBeno
Obano
1Simon
McIntyre
P    
    HTom
Dunn
2Tom
Cruse
H    
    PHenry
Thomas
3Jake
Cooper-Woolley
P    
    LCharlie
Ewels
4Joe
Launchbury
L    
    LLuke
Charteris
5Kearnan
Myall
L    
    FLMatt
Garvey
6James
Haskell
FL    
   1FLPaul
Grant
7Thomas
Young
FL    
   18Zach
Mercer
8Nizaam
Carr
8    
    SHKahn
Fotuali'i
9Dan
Robson
SH1   
  31FHRhys
Priestland
10Danny
Cipriani
FH 3  
    WAled
Brew
11Marcus
Watson
W2   
    CJames
Wilson
12Gaby
Lovobalavu
C1   
    CJonathan
Joseph
13Juan
De Jongh
C1   
   1WJack
Wilson
14Christian
Wade
W    
    FBAnthony
Watson
15Willie
Le Roux
FB    
Replacements
    RMichael
Van Vuuren
16Ashley
Johnson
RH    
    RPLucas
Noguera Paz
17Ben
Harris
RP    
    RPMax
Lahiff
18Marty
Moore
RP    
    RLElliott
Stooke
19James
Gaskell
RL    
    RJames
Phillips
20Guy
Thompson
RFL    
    RSHChris
Cook
21Joe
Simpson
RSH    
    RFreddie
Burns
22Rob
Miller
R    
    RDarren
Atkins
23Guy
Armitage
R