In Focus: Gloucester Rugby (H)

21 September 2020

Bath Rugby face West Country rivals Gloucester Rugby in Round 21 in the Gallagher Premiership as 1000 supporters are welcomed back to the Rec as part of a government pilot. Here is a closer look at the Cherry and White's...

Bath Rugby’s only defeat since Gallagher Premiership Rugby resumed was 23-27 at home to Wasps in round 17. Bath’s most recent home form at the Recreation Ground has been a little shaky with a won two, lost two record.

Gloucester Rugby have lost their last two Gallagher Premiership Rugby fixtures since beating London Irish at Kingsholm on 5 September. The Cherry & White’s only away win in any competition since October was 44-15 at Worcester in round 14 of Premiership Rugby.

Gloucester have lost just one of their last five Premiership Rugby encounters with Bath: 20-43 at Kingsholm in April 2018, whilst Gloucester’s only victory at the Recreation Ground in their last five visits in all competitions was by a solitary point in Gallagher Premiership Rugby in October 2017.


MATCH DETAILS

Date: Tuesday 22 September

Kick-off: 17:30

Competition: Gallagher Premiership

Where: The Rec

Referee: Craig Maxwell-Keys

Assistants: Adam Leal & Karl Dickson

TMO: Christophe Ridley

Citing Officer: John Byett

Media coverage: BBC Radio Bristol, BT Sport 1


CURRENT FORM

Harlequins (H) – 15-28 (L)

Exeter Chiefs (A) – 35-22 (L)

London Irish (H) – 36-23 (W) 


LAST TIME OUT

Gerbrandt Grobler scored within two minutes of coming onto to field to steer Gloucester to a second-half comeback victory against West Country rivals Bath at Kingsholm.

Gloucester trailed at half-time after a faultless kicking performance from Bath fly-half Rhys Priestland, but a much-improved second-half performance with quick tries from Grobler and Ruan Ackermann saw them win their fourth of the season to keep the pace in the top four.

The hosts found themselves 7-0 up after just six minutes, Jason Woodward piling over from short range and Danny Cipriani adding the conversion.

But midway through the first-half the tables turned fully in favour of the visitors, all down to the work of Priestland with the fly-half kicking three penalties to give the Blue, Black and Whites the edge at the break.

Having dominated first-half possession Bath will be rueing missed opportunities to get further ahead early on as the Cherry and Whites hit back immediately after the break, Freddie Clarke going over the line to make it 12-9.

But, who else but Priestland to step up and turn the tide again, adding two further penalties much to the dismay of the Kingsholm masses.

It wasn’t long before those in the stands were up cheering again, though, as tries from Grobler and Ackermann just after the hour-mark secured a bonus-point for the transformed hosts – Billy Twelvetrees converting on both occasions before adding a penalty of his own.

The Cherry and Whites continued to apply pressure in the closing stages, preventing a tryless Bath from getting anything from the game. 


Bath Rugby side to face Gloucester Rugby 

15. Anthony Watson, 14. Semesa Rokoduguni, 13. Jonathan Joseph, 12. Josh Matavesi, 11. Ruaridh McConnochie, 10. Rhys Priestland, 9. Ben Spencer; 1. Beno Obano, 2. Tom Dunn, 3. Will Stuart, 4. Elliott Stooke, 5. Charlie Ewels (C), 6. Tom Ellis, 7. Sam Underhill, 8. Taulupe Faletau

Replacements 

16. Jack Walker, 17. Lewis Boyce, 18. Christian Judge, 19. Josh McNally, 20. Miles Reid, 21. Will Chudley, 22. Cameron Redpath, 23. Joe Cokanasiga


GLOUCESTER

15. Matt Banahan, 14. Ollie Thorley, 13. Chris Harris, 12. Billy Twelvetrees, 11. Jonny May, 10. Lloyd Evans, 9. Willi Heinz; 1. Val Rapava-Ruskin, 2. Jack Singleton, 3. Fraser Balmain, 4. Matt Garvey, 5. Matias Alemanno, 6. Jake Polledri, 7. Lewis Ludlow (C), 8. Ruan Ackermann

Replacements

16. Henry Walker, 17. Corne Fourie, 18. Jack Stanley, 19. Ed Slater, 20. Jordy Reid, 21. Joe Simpson, 22. Tom Seabrook, 23. Louis Rees-Zammit.


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