Gloucester halt Saints' winning run
PREMIERSHIP WRAP: A brace from Henry Trinder helped Gloucester Rugby to a thrilling 29-24 victory as they ended Northampton Saints run of four straight Premiership.
Trinder’s double as well as dot downs from Jason Woodward, Billy Twelvetrees and Willi Heinz ensured Johan Ackermann's side maintained their perfect start at the Kingsholm.
Jamie Gibson, Harry Mallinder and Mike Haywood went over for the Saints but the Cherry and Whites held on for their third win of the season.
Elsewhere, Sam Simmonds scored a superb individual try as Exeter Chiefs inflicted a second defeat of the season on Newcastle Falcons at Sandy Park.
While, Aled Brew scored two tries as 14-man Bath Rugby secured their fourth win of the Premiership Rugby season with a bonus point 29-13 victory against Worcester Warriors.
And lastly, Leicester Tigers were pushed all the way as they recorded their fourth straight Premiership Rugby success with a 28-27 win over London Irish.
Bath 29-13 Worcester Warriors
Freddie Burns, making his debut following a summer move from Leicester Tigers, was red carded in the second period for a tip tackle on Josh Adams.
But by then the damage was done, with the hosts already in a comfortable lead thanks to three first-half tries.
Jonathan Joseph, Brew and the outstanding Ben Tapuai all crossed with Dean Hammond replying for the Warriors, before Brew’s second wrapped up the points in the second half after Jamie Shillcock gave Worcester hope.
The result leaves the Warriors still winless this season but there were plenty of reasons to be optimistic as they controlled parts of the first half.
However, a piece of Joseph magic put Bath ahead as he finished off a flowing move with a one-handed finish in the corner following a fine Tapuai break.
Worcester fought back though and, after a number of handling errors, they got it right as Hammond ran a great line, outmuscled a scrambling Brew and dotted down.
That gave them the lead and they battled hard to retain it until half time but Bath’s attacking quality shone through.
Brew touched down in the corner following a relentless attack from the forwards before flanker Zach Mercer broke clear and set up Tapuai.
Worcester bounced straight back after the interval as Shillcock skipped through one tackle in the corner, but they could not sustain it and Bath wrapped up the bonus point when Burns whipped a fine pass out for Brew to dot down again.
Burns was sent off minutes later before Tapuai suffered a game-ending injury but Josh Lewis settled nerves with a penalty to secure Bath’s win.
Tries: Joseph, Brew 2, Tapuai
Cons: Burns 3
Tries: Hammond, Shillcock
Bath: 15 Anthony Watson, 14 Semesa Rokoduguni, 13 Jonathan Joseph, 12 Ben Tapuai, 11 Aled Brew, 10 Freddie Burns, 9 Chris Cook, 8 Taulupe Faletau, 7 Sam Underhill, 6 Zach Mercer, 5 Elliott Stooke, 4 Charlie Ewels (captain), 3 Anthony Perenise, 2 Jack Walker, 1 Beno Obano
Replacements: 16 Tom Dunn, 17 Nick Auterac, 18 Henry Thomas, 19 James Phillips, 20 Levi Douglas, 21 Kahn Fotuali’i, 22 Josh Lewis, 23 Max Clark
Worcester: 15 Chris Pennell, 14 Josh Adams, 13 Jackson Willison, 12 Ben Te’o, 11 Dean Hammond, 10 Jamie Shillcock, 9 Jonny Arr, 8 GJ van Velze, 7 Sam Lewis, 6 David Denton, 5 Will Spencer, 4 Donncha O’Callaghan (captain) 3 Biyi Alo, 2 Jack Singleton, 1 Ryan Bower
Replacements: 16 Joe Taufete’e, 17 Ethan Waller, 18 Gareth Milasinovich, 19 Christian Scotland-Williamson, 20 Alafoti Faosiliva, 21 Peter Stringer, 22 Jono Lance, 23 Wynand Olivier
Referee: Luke Pearce
Assistant Referees: Christophe Ridley & Simon McConnell.
TMO: Graham Hughes
Exeter Chiefs 34-24 Newcastle Falcons
The reigning champions took the lead on ten minutes when Australian Nic White sniped through for his first Chiefs try, Gareth Steenson adding the extras.
Steenson slotted a penalty on 19 minutes, and Chiefs threatened to run riot with their second try moments later.
White and Simmonds combined delightfully to set up White’s compatriot Lachie Turner to cross the whitewash, Steenson again making no mistake from the tee.
Newcastle got their first points on the board in scrappy fashion on 32 minutes, captain Will Welch getting the plaudits when he dotted down amid a heap of bodies, after the TMO adjudged he had grounded the ball.
The moment of the match came shortly after, however, when No. 8 Simmonds displayed the footwork of a wing to dance past three tackles and crash over for a third converted try for the hosts.
But the Falcons had the final say of an entertaining opening period, Alex Tait and Vereniki Goneva combining for Juan Pablo Socino to race over for a routine score.
Steenson, who kicked well all day, converted an early penalty in the second half to stretch Chiefs’ lead to 27-10.
The game became scrappy in the early stages of the second half, but the tenacious Falcons struck a blow on 59 minutes when Tait crossed after a neat build-up. Replacement Toby Flood, on his first appearance back at the club where he started his career, kicked the conversion.
However, Exeter hit back immediately with their bonus point score, the referee awarding a penalty try after DTH van der Merwe came in from the side in holding up an Exeter try, with the Canada international sin binned as a result.
Falcons rallied in the final stages and got their bonus point try through Goneva with four minutes to go, Flood again adding two from the tee, to make it 34-24.
Tries: White, Turner, Simmonds, Penalty Try
Cons: Steenson 4
Pens: Steenson 2
Tries:Welch, Socino, Tait, Goneva
Cons: Flood 2
Exeter Chiefs: 15 Lachie Turner, 14 Jack Nowell, 13 Henry Slade, 12 Ian Whitten, 11 Olly Woodburn, 10 Gareth Steenson, 9 Nic White, 8 Sam Simmonds, 7 Don Armand, 6 Sam Skinner, 5 Jonny Hill, 4 Mitch Lees, 3 Harry Williams, 2 Jack Yeandle (captain), 1 Carl Rimmer
Replacements: 16 Elvis Taione, 17 Ben Moon, 18 Tomas Francis, 19 Ollie Atkins, 20 Julian Salvi, 21 Stu Townsend, 22 Tom Hendrickson, 23 Phil Dollman
Newcastle Falcons: 15 Alex Tait, 14 DTH van der Merwe, 13 Chris Harris, 12 Juan Pablo Socino, 11 Vereniki Goneva, 10 Craig Willis, 9 Sonatane Takulua, 8 Nili Latu, 7 Will Welch (captain), 6 Mark Wilson, 5 Will Witty, 4 Calum Green, 3 Jon Welsh, 2 Santiago Socino, 1 Trevor Davison
Replacements: 16 Kyle Cooper, 17 Rob Vickers, 18 Jake Ilnicki, 19 Sean Robinson, 20 Ally Hogg, 21 Sam Stuart, 22 Toby Flood, 23 Josh Matavesi
Referee: Andrew Jackson
Assistant Referees: Jack Makepeace & Phil Watters.
TMO: Keith Lewis.
Gloucester 29-24 Northampton Saints
Gloucester got off to the perfect start as Trinder’s fine dummy allowed him to bisect the Saints backline as he tumbled over the line after being tripped.
The Saints response was immediate and incisive as a free-flowing move saw Luther Burrell slip in Gibson who was able to do the rest as he dotted down in the corner.
But the hosts went in ahead at the break after the ball was recycled to Trinder and he produces some fine footwork to beat Cobus Reinach and lunge for the line under pressure.
Saints were looking for a reaction from the get go and it was Harry Mallinder who got it as Ahsee Tuala breezed past two players with ease to set up the fly-half.
Yet the home side found themselves in front again as Woodward collected Heinz’s high kick in dominant fashion before running over to restore their advantage.
Twelvetrees was then able to pick the perfect line and went over between the posts to notch up his second try of the season and a bonus-point for the hosts.
It was a fine display from Heinz and he was able to get himself on the scoresheet with a fine try of his own after seeing a gap in the defence and breaking through to score.
The Saints were far from dead and buried as Mike Haywood rumbled over from the line-out to cut the deficit to four points but the visitors couldn’t make their late pressure tell and Gloucester held out.
Tries: Trinder 2, Woodward, Twelvetrees, Heinz
Cons: Williams 2
Tries: Gibson, Mallinder, Haywood
Cons: Mallinder 2, Myler
Gloucester: 15 Jason Woodward, 14 Henry Purdy, 13 Henry Trinder, 12 Billy Twelvetrees, 11 David Halaifonua, 10 Owen Williams, 9 Willi Heinz (captain), 8 Ruan Ackermann 7 Jacob Rowan, 6 Lewis Ludlow, 5 Ed Slater; 4 Tom Savage, 3 John Afoa; 2 Richard Hibbard, 1 Val Rapava Ruskin
Replacements: 16 Motu Matu'u, 17 Josh Hohneck, 18 Gareth Denman, 19 Jeremy Thrush, 20 Freddie Clarke, 21 Ben Vellacott, 22 Billy Burns, 23 Tom Hudson
Northampton: 15 Ahsee Tuala, 14 George North, 13 Luther Burrell, 12 Piers Francis, 11 Tom Collins, 10 Harry Mallinder, 9 Cobus Reinach, 8 Sam Dickinson, 7 Teimana Harrison, 6 Jamie Gibson, 5 David Ribbans, 4 Michael Paterson, 3 Kieran Brookes, 2 Dylan Hartley (captain), 1 Alex Waller
Replacements: 16 Mikey Haywood, 17 Francois van Wyk, 18 Jamal Ford-Robinson, 19 Api Ratuniyarawa, 20 Courtney Lawes, 21 Alex Mitchell, 22 Stephen Myler, 23 Ben Foden
Referee: Wayne Barnes
Assistant Referees: Hamish Smales & Jonathan Healy.
TMO: Geoff Warren.
London Irish 27-28 Leicester Tigers
Nick Malouf and Will Evans both dotted down before Jonny May had his sixth try in six Tigers appearances with George Ford kicking 13 points.
But tries from Blair Cowan, David Paice and Alex Lewington ensured that Irish secured a losing bonus point at the Madejski Stadium.
Tigers were ahead early as Harrison’s dart to the line gave the visitors numbers and Matt Toomua’s long pass found Malouf for his third Leicester try.
The visitors continued to look the more dangerous side and three Ford penalties extended the Tigers advantage to 14-0 with 25 minutes played.
Paice was then held up over the tryline by Greg Bateman as Irish threatened and from the resulting scrum Gareth Owen was sin binned for a dangerous tackle on Greig Tonks.
Tommy Bell made no mistake from in front of the posts to get Irish on the scoreboard with Tigers holding onto their 14-3 lead through to half-time
Will Evans’ third try in Tigers colours came shortly after the break as he raced onto Ben White’s pass and Ford’s conversion moved the Tigers further ahead.
Another Bell penalty reduced the deficit before Blair Cowan found space on the short side to bury his way over the line and the Irish fullback’s conversion made it 21-13.
But Jonny May’s try-scoring run continued as another long Toomua pass, after a strong Tigers’ driving maul, found the winger in acres of space to run in under the posts.
David Paice brought the Irish back into it again after James Marshall’s sharp break with Alex Lewington crossing with the final play to earn a losing bonus point.
For London Irish:
Tries: Cowan, Paice, Lewington
Cons: Bell 3
Pens: Bell 2
Tries: Malouf, Evans, May
Cons: Ford 2
Pens: Ford 3
London Irish: 15 Tommy Bell, 14 Alex Lewington, 13 Aseli Tikoirotuma, 12 Greig Tonks, 11 Topsy Ojo, 10 James Marshall, 9 Ben Meehan, 8 Jake Schatz, 7 Blair Cowan, 6 Josh McNally, 5 Sebastian de Chaves, 4 Franco van der Merwe, 3 Petrus Du Plessis, 2 David Paice (captain), 1 Ben Franks
Replacements: 16 Todd Gleave, 17 Harry Elrington, 18 Ollie Hoskins, 19 Teofilo Paulo, 20 Lasha Lomidze, 21 Scott Steele, 22 Theo Brophy Clews, 23 Tom Fowlie
Leicester Tigers: 15 Telusa Veainu, 14 Nick Malouf, 13 Gareth Owen, 12 Matt Toomua, 11 Jonny May, 10 George Ford (captain), 9 Sam Harrison, 8 Valentino Mapapalangi, 7 Will Evans, 6 Sione Kalamafoni, 5 Dom Barrow, 4 Dan Tuohy, 3 Dan Cole, 2 George McGuigan, 1 Greg Bateman
Replacements: 16 Tom Youngs, 17 Ellis Genge, 18 Patrick Cilliers, 19 Harry Wells, 20 Luke Hamilton, 21 Ben Youngs, 22 Joe Ford, 23 Mathew Tait
Referee: JP Doyle
Assistant Referees: Anthony Woodthorpe & Matthew O’Grady.
TMO: David Rose.