Big win for Bath

p12906Sport-10-1

Published: Friday 5th December 2014 by The News Editor

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Bath inflicted a stunning 30-5 defeat on Montpellier at a sodden Altrad Stadium on Friday night.

The Aviva Premiership side scored three tries in 50 minutes, but were not able to pick up a priceless fourth to put themselves back in the hunt in Pool four of the European Rugby Champions Cup.

Bath came into the game knowing that a third successive defeat would end any slim hopes they still had of going through to the knockout stages.

Defeats in Glasgow and at home against Toulouse had put a major dent in their ambitions in October but head coach Mike Ford said he had not yet given up hope.

The conditions were atrocious and he opening 40 minutes belonged to Bath’s England fly-half George Ford who was calmness personified on a miserable night.

He helped his side to build a score, dropping a 30-metre goal and then kicking two penalties, while keeping his team in the right areas.

The Bath scrum was dominant and as the penalties began to mount against the home side, so the frustration began to show in the Montpellier players.

Springbok prop Patric Cilliers crumpled at the first scrum, back-row Antoine Battut made a high tackle on Bath scrum-half Chris Cook and then skipper Thibault Privat followed Battut to the sin-bin for taking out Henry Thomas at a line-out.

Bath kept their cool and made the most of their numerical advantage.

It was Thomas who picked up the first try of the night after some driving play from Alafoti Fa’Osiliva and Ford added the extras from the side of the posts.

Then, no sooner had Privat left the field, the Bath scrum picked up a penalty try that once again Ford converted to bring the half to a rousing end for the visitors.

They maintained their composure the second half and picked up a third try from Leroy Houston after 50 minutes following some smart play up the right touchline.

Ford converted off the touchline and Bath were left with half-an-hour to conjure up the bonus point try.

It did not help the home cause that they picked up a third yellow card when replacement hooker Charles Geli was given 10 minutes on the sidelines for failing to release at the breakdown.

But Bath also lost skipper Stuart Hooper to a yellow card before the end when he was adjudged to have taken a player out in the air at a line-out.

That came after 68 minutes as Montpellier drove a line-out towards line and number eight Alex Tulou went over.

Published: Friday 5th December 2014 by The News Editor

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