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Report: Loughborough Lightning 24-7 Bristol Ladies

Bristol Ladies slipped to back-to-back defeats on the road and, as a result, will miss out on the Tyrells Premier 15s top four.

Two scores either side of half time from the hosts were enough to edge out the Ladies at the Loughborough University Sports Ground. 

Bristol pushed the hosts throughout the eighty minutes and got their reward in the form of a penalty try in the 75th minute.

What happened?

In an energetic and fast-paced start to the game, it was Wasps who applied the initial pressure on the Bristol line, but the visitors held firm and forced errors from Wasps at critical times.

Lucy Attwood orchestrated an intimidating attack as Bristol looked to use the pace out wide of Stoeger-Goddard and Gregson, but the Wasps defence was up for the test and shut down the space out wide effectively. 

With both defences not giving a lot away, opportunities to score were hard to come by in the first half and it finished honours even at 0-0.

Wasps started the second-half much brighter than Bristol and scored in the opening minutes of the half as, Rochelle Clark powered her way over to put hosts in the lead.

They extended their lead to 19 points with two tries in quick succession, thanks to the pace of Abby Dow and strength of Anna Glynn Davies.

Loughborough set the tone in the early stages of the game, applying pressure on Bristol at the breakdown as well as demonstrating physicality in attack.

The hosts broke the deadlock after a break away try in twentieth minute, Lizzie Adams finishing a move that began on the Loughborough five metre line.

The Lightning doubled their lead before the break to make it 10-0, a line-out five metre out was powerfully driven over the Bristol line.

The Lightning stretched their lead to seventeen points thanks to a try from Emma Hardy, before Bristol got their just reward for their effort, as they were awarded a penalty try with five minutes to play.

However, it was hosts who had the last say, wrapping up a bonus-point victory in the final play of the game as replacement, Hannah Phillip finished well under pressure.

Bristol Ladies:

15. Chantelle Miell, 14. Lillian Stoeger-Goddard, 13. Sydney Gregson, 12. Phoebe Murray, 11. Merryn Doidge, 10. Lucy Attwood (VC), 9. Brooke Bradley; 1. Abbie Parsons, 2. Charlie Budge, 3. Ellie Mulhearn, 4. Amelia Buckland-Hurry, 5. Hollie Cunningham, 6. Robyn Price, 7, Daisie Mayes, 8. Kate Newton.

Replacements: 16. Jess Thomas, 17. Michaelaa Roberts, 18. Esme Bird, 19.  Rowena Marston, 20. Maeve Liston, 21. Lucie Skuse 22. Gabby Gower.