By Ade Patton
November 14 2011
Bristol continued their run of poor performances with a defeat to Principality side, Neath. In their first visit in a decade the visitors came away with a bonus point win. Poor defence from Bristol allowed the the vistors to score far too easily and Bristol failed to take advantage of chances they created, aside from the fine brek from Otto
Bristol had the better of the opening exchanges, despite playing into the wind. Fautua Otto, on his debut, made a good early run that resulted in a penalty, well kicked by Tristan Roberts. Bristol played with imagination and Matt Williams has a couple darting runs out on the wing.
Another penalty was landed by Roberts and Bristol lead 6-0. However, the Bristol defence was caught flat-footed by a quick tap and go from Neath. Gravell released Davies who went over in the corner for an unconverted try.
Bristol managed to edge further in front when another good break from Otto saw Bristol awarded a penalty for offside, landed by Roberts. With half drawing to a close, Neath kicked a penalty down to the corner and the excellent Gravell squirmed in from the lineout. Langdon made light work of the difficult conversion. Then, right at the death, Whitney barged his way through weak tackling to score by the posts. The conversion left the half-time score at 9-19.
Langdon added another penalty for the visitors early in the second half. Bristol was stung back into action and Rhys Lawrence was driven close to the line as the pack mauled forward. Neath's Powell saw yellow and Bristol attempted to turn the screw. Lawrence again went close only to cough up possession in the face of determined defence.
Finally, Bristol managed to find a way through when Otto made another excellent break and popped the ball to Jon Goodridge to score under the posts. Roberts converted to bring Bristol to 16-22. Neath though continued to play well and exploited poorly organised defence when Bramwell and McCarthy made great inroads and released Evans for the bonus point try. Langdon again converted to take Neath to a final score of 16-29.