Bristol hold off Bath to go third
PREMIERSHIP REPORT: Bristol Bears resisted a second-half fightback from Bath to claim their first Premiership victory at the Rec in 14 years and go third in the league.
The Bears scored three tries on their way to a 19-13 victory.
Chris Vui got the visitors off to a dream start in the West Country derby with a try inside the opening five minutes, before Rhys Priestland cut the gap with a penalty for Bath.
Alapati Leiua extended Bristol’s lead at the end of the first quarter, with Callum Sheedy adding the extras, but another Priestland penalty kept Bath in touch at the break.
Having established a 12-6 lead at the interval, the Bears landed another blow to their near neighbours with their third try just past the hour as Harry Randall dotted down.
Sheedy’s conversion made it 19-6 before Bristol were made to sweat in the final 15 minutes after Will Chudley raced over, but the visitors held on to secure derby bragging rights.
Pens: Priestland 2
For Bristol Bears:
Tries: Vui, Leiua, Randall
Cons: Sheedy 2
Yellow card: Joe Joyce (Bristol, 27)
Bath: 15 Tom Homer, 14 Semesa Rokoduguni, 13 Jackson Willison, 12 Josh Matavesi, 11 Ruaridh McConnochie, 10 Rhys Priestland, 9 Rhys Webb, 8 Taulupe Faletau, 7 Francois Louw (captain), 6 Mike Williams, 5 Elliott Stooke, 4 Josh McNally, 3 Will Stuart, 2 Jack Walker, 1 Lewis Boyce.
Replacements: 16 Tom Doughty, 17 Beno Obano, 18 Christian Judge, 19 Tom Ellis, 20 Josh Bayliss, 21 Chris Cook, 22 Freddie Burns, 23 Max Wright.
Bristol Bears: 15 Charles Piutau, 14 Luke Morahan, 13 Piers O’Conor, 12 Sam Bedlow, 11 Alapati Leiua, 10 Callum Sheedy, 9 Andy Uren, 8 Jordan Crane, 7 Steven Luatua (captain), 6 Chris Vui, 5 Joe Joyce, 4 Ed Holmes, 3 Lewis Thiede, 2 Shaun Malton, 1 Yann Thomas.
Replacements: 16 Will Capon, 17 Jake Woolmore, 18 Max Lahiff, 19 Nathan Hughes, 20 Luke Hamilton, 21 Harry Randall, 22 Ian Madigan, 23 Mat Protheroe.
Referee: Ian Tempest
Assistant Referees: Jamie Leahy & Paul Dix.
TMO: Keith Lewis.