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Pivotal Point: Bath v Worcester


Rokodoguni: give him ball

By P G Tips
November 14 2018

Bath face a pivotal point in their season against Worcester Warriors at the Rec on Saturday. Pivotal may seem a strange term only a third way through the season. Bath though lie 8th in the Premiership, are winless in in 7 games and in dire need of a win. The next three Premiership fixtures would normally be thought winnable. With 11 on the injured list and another 6 probably on international duty, will Bath have the resources to triumph and start to turn their season around?

Worcester are working hard to distance themselves from their recent past. Currently they lie 7th in the Premiership table, welcome breathing space from the average 11th place of their past 5 seasons. Their playing style is also markedly more adventurous. Where previously the pressing need for survival dictated a 10 man game built on a stubborn forward effort, defence and goalkicking, this campaign pragmatism has given way to a much more free flowing game. Their 5 match-winning streak in all competitions was brought to an end by Saracens last weekend but they amassed 29 tries in those games. Any side that can take two wins at Welford Road in the space of 5 weeks has to be a real threat.

 

Despite that good run, Warriors lie only 7th in the Premiership, placed above Bath only on points difference. With home advantage, this is a match the club would have targeted for a strong win at the start of the season. Warriors try scoring feats and Bath’s porous defence now make the tie a tougher test than previously thought.  All Worcester’s good play revolves around their international halfbacks – Hougaard and Weir, so the home back row will have to be right on their mettle. Who that trio will be is a conundrum as Underhill, Louw and Mercer could all be on international duty, while Faletau remains injured, Garvey touch and go to be fit and Grant still sidelined. Lock forward resources could also be strained if both Ewels and Stooke are chosen against Japan.

 

Halfbacks aside Warriors boast finishing threats in Heem, Pennel and Humphreys – all capable of scything counter attack as well as rounding off set moves. Venter in the centre will give direction and stability so they will be looking to their forwards to give them plentiful good and quick ball. Those forwards may lack household names but both Schonert and Singleton have featured in recent England squads – the former a mighty scrummager- and those behind them have been forged into a highly effective lineout and maul unit.

 

Bath’s pack must get on top of that unit, control possession, territory and pace of the game to seize the chance of victory. This is a game crying out for as much experience as can be mustered, so the presence of Attwood and Charteris will be crucial and fingers will be crossed that Garvey will be fit and ready. Tom Dunn is also available and may feature while Vuna and Willison are in the mix for the backs. News for late November and December is encouraging. The cavalry is expected to arrive as Brew, Priestland, Joseph and Faletau return to fitness and the internationals become available. A win this weekend and renewed competition for places would set the squad up well for the Newcastle and Sale matches.

 

Saturday’s weather is expected to be chilly but sunny, with moderate winds and only a small risk of rain – good for running rugby. Bath’s approach should be simple. Shore up the defence, get the ball to the wings in space, stop kicking away good attacking ball and turn on the pressure in the final quarter.  Full-blooded roaring support from the crowd would also help. Bath must find the execution to pivot their season upward or face a dogfight with the Premiership strugglers in the next two rounds.

 

 

Possible Teams:
Bath:
Catt, Batty, Thomas, Attwood, Charteris, Garvey (Capt.), Ellis, Bayliss. Chudley Burns. McConnochie, Roberts, Wright, Rokodoguni. Homer

Replacements: Noguera, Dunn, Perenise, Douglas, Reid. Green, Fotuali’I, Willison.

 

Worcester:

Black, Singleton, Schonert, Bresler, Barry, Mama, Lewis, Van Velze.

Hougaard, Weir. Heem, Venter, Mills, Humphreys. Pennell.

Replacements: Bower, Taufete’e, Kerrod, Phillips, Hill, Heany, Butler, Howe.

 

 

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Comeonmylovers.co.uk
Comeonmylovers.co.uk (IP Logged)

Pivotal Point: Bath v Worcester
14/11/2018 07:46
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Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 2018:11:21:16:21:59 by P G Tips.

 
Bathovalballer
Bathovalballer (IP Logged)

Re: Pivotal Point: Bath v Worcester
14/11/2018 09:32
Very balanced and accurate read as always PGT. Thanks.

I read somewhere that Weir and Mama may not be available to the Warriors which could be good for us, but Hill could be released back to them by Jones.

This is truly a must win for us and our forwards, especially the front 5, really have to step to the mark and get dominance over their 8. Hopefully this will provide enough decent ball and kicking positions for us to win the game. Personally I don't care if it is by 1 point and therefore we MUST take every point on offer, and that means kicking for goal as often as we can. We must treat the game like a test match, and forget this fanciful notion of lineout drives as being the answer to our prayers. The tactic has failed us too many times and cost us tight games because of it. Build a score and when 3 clear scores ahead, then try the fancy stuff.

But don't anyone underestimate Worcester. They have power and pace and also play for the full 80 minutes. They have won games at the death, and we have got to be well ahead with 10 minutes to go as we seem to loose concentration and lack fitness in those latter periods.

It is winnable with the remaining players we have and as most of them are well rested, there should be no excuse for anything but a win.

Bath by 5.

Adopted player 2018/19 Semesa Rokoduguni

The Rock that is Semesa and how he will be rocking this season.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 2018:11:14:09:35:40 by Bathovalballer.

 
Froggie
Froggie (IP Logged)

Re: Pivotal Point: Bath v Worcester
14/11/2018 09:33
I do not understand why we did not compete in the Premier Cup.

A run of good results would have given heart to the players and supporters.

These guys are professionals and should be capable of playing each week, especially as most of them don't even play 80 minutes.

I would also question the clubs intension of promoting Hooper to a more senior role. He was a good club captain, but not a good coach.

We should also clear out the stars who only play 3 or 4 games, recruit good foot soldiers and reset the the coaching set-up.

Something ain't right.

 
P G Tips
P G Tips (IP Logged)

Re: Pivotal Point: Bath v Worcester
14/11/2018 09:42
Agree BoB - take every point on offer.

I still think our wings can be match winners too- we have got Joe C & Roko into good positions in fits & starts so far this season. When we can do so regularly, we can cause all sorts of problems to defences. Those would include penalty chances as well as try finishes.

If Weir & Mama are missing that would be a boost to us.

PG

 
Boldangrey
Boldangrey (IP Logged)

Re: Pivotal Point: Bath v Worcester
14/11/2018 11:10
Interesting sports psychology.

Play a strong side in the Cup games and Worcs becomes just another important game.

Rest the players in the cup games. Thoughts dwell on the Worcs game and it becomes a'must win' game.

By resting our best team we have significantly increased the pressure on them to perform on Saturday.

Never a good idea to put avoidable pressure on a team.

 
MESSAGES->author
CoochieCoo (IP Logged)

Re: Pivotal Point: Bath v Worcester
15/11/2018 07:53
Duncan Weir released by Scotland

http://zdgzqa.bay.livefilestore.com/y1p7Mwi7pLXeM89TY2KFdDQ-UUDGSv1FKNdhYdrW-koAuRN3tsqCPfE3onFxuO-3cZ0057Tom1uJai3vjkz3dvY_Q/1998%20Euro%20Champs.jpg http://zdgzqa.bay.livefilestore.com/y1pFul9UAV5zEXOzeRc1kmmlgDKXTYTIlTnGoQzYelH6KzdCeU-exN0IGo74QN2OGvlSoEiVjzAESvHx9BFlBsNFA/Bath%202008.jpg

 
P G Tips
P G Tips (IP Logged)

Re: Pivotal Point: Bath v Worcester
15/11/2018 08:58
Times reporting that Elliott Stooke and Nick Schonert have been released by England.


PG

 
Bathovalballer
Bathovalballer (IP Logged)

Re: Pivotal Point: Bath v Worcester
15/11/2018 09:05
Good news about Stooke tempered by the news on the two Warriors released!

C'MON BATH. No excuses now.

Adopted player 2018/19 Semesa Rokoduguni

The Rock that is Semesa and how he will be rocking this season.

 
rossi
Mr_Worcester (IP Logged)

Re: Pivotal Point: Bath v Worcester
15/11/2018 11:39
Interesting international selections could make us stronger this weekend.

We will be missing Ted Hill as hes on the bench for England.

Weir will be back with us.

Schonert and Teo could also be in our team as they are unused by England.

As mentioned above, Mama has a hamstring injury and is doubtful to play.

 
MESSAGES->author
OutsideBath (IP Logged)

Re: Pivotal Point: Bath v Worcester
15/11/2018 12:50
With the missing players for Bath and what's gone on so far this season I'm guessing the bookies must have Worcs favourites to win?

Tom Dunn - Adopted player 2018/19

 
BathMatt53
BathMatt53 (IP Logged)

Re: Pivotal Point: Bath v Worcester
15/11/2018 13:29
Worcs have just as many players out, are equal on points in the table and Bath are at home, so I very much doubt it (as do you I suspect). I would guess the bookies will go Bath by 5-10 as that tends to be the pattern under those circumstances.

[Adoptee 18/19: Man Mountain Dave Attwood, back in the BB&W and ready to smash]

 
MESSAGES->author
OutsideBath (IP Logged)

Re: Pivotal Point: Bath v Worcester
15/11/2018 13:40
Quote:
BathMatt53
Worcs have just as many players out, are equal on points in the table and Bath are at home, so I very much doubt it (as do you I suspect). I would guess the bookies will go Bath by 5-10 as that tends to be the pattern under those circumstances.

To be honest I've no idea what the bookies are saying as I rarely bet (only 1 reasonably large bet in the last year), just thinking that I'd have Worcs as favourites based on how each team has performed so far.

Tom Dunn - Adopted player 2018/19

 
Mike the Taxi
Mike the Taxi (IP Logged)

Re: Pivotal Point: Bath v Worcester
15/11/2018 14:25
[www.oddschecker.com] Odds here

 
Old Bath Tub
Old Bath Tub (IP Logged)

Re: Pivotal Point: Bath v Worcester
15/11/2018 16:13
Quote:
Mike the Taxi
https://www.oddschecker.com/rugby-union/england/gallagher-premiership/bath-v-worcester/winner Odds here

At those odds I shall go for the draw ! (Sm128)

Adopted Player 2018/19 Ross Batty

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