- Gallagher Premiership
- Friday, September 4th 2020
Will Carpenter reports from Sixways
Report: Worcester Warriors 13-36 Bristol Bears
Friday, September 4th 2020
Bristol Bears delivered a devastating second half display to earn a first victory at Sixways for more than 14 years and climb back into second place in the Gallagher Premiership.
Trailing 13-10 at the interval after Ed Holmes’ converted try was cancelled out by Malani Nanai and eight points from Duncan Weir, Pat Lam’s men sprung into life with four tries to earn a fourth bonus-point win of the season.
Dan Thomas started the second-half spree from a driving lineout, before Siale Piutau scythed through the Warriors’ defence to touch down just six minutes later.
Immediately from the restart, Ben Earl saw his try ruled out for a foot in touch from Henry Purdy, but after Uren had sealed the bonus-point, the on-loan flanker took full advantage of Steven Luatua’s turnover to cap a memorable second 40 at Sixways.
Lam’s men made a lively start at Sixways and took the lead courtesy of Holmes’ close-range surge, after Siale Piutau’s break and offload to the lively Randall took the Bears inside the Warriors 22.
Weir then saw his penalty drift wide, before Sinckler and Morahan combined to deny Bressler in the corner, as the hosts responded from their early setback.
The Warriors fly half made no mistake with his second penalty after a break from Heward – and the Bears were given another let off on the half-hour mark when Radradra nudged Howe into touch inches before the line.
But after a prolonged period of pressure, the hosts finally got their reward, as Weir’s stabbed kick was hacked forward by Heward and Nanai won the race to touch down, with Weir’s conversion edging them in front.
The Scottish number ten was on target again on 34 minutes after Vui’s high tackle, but the Bears hit back through another Randall dart, as Charles Piutau was adjudged held up by referee Wayne Barnes. From the resulting scrum, the Bears won the penalty and Sheedy nudged over to reduce deficit to three points.
There was still time for another Bears charge, as Sheedy’s kick took play inside the Warriors 22 and a powerful drive at the lineout had the home side in retreat – but when the ball was moved left, Sinckler was unable to ground and the home side survived to enter the break narrowly ahead.
The second half saw the Bears shift into gear with Dan Thomas touching down from a driving lineout on 45 minutes to edge back in front.
It got even better for Lam’s men six minutes later when Siale Piutau, sensational throughout, scorched on to Uren’s flat pass to cruise in under the posts.
The Bears thought they had grabbed the bonus point straight from the restart, as Radradra and Purdy traded passes to send Earl in at the corner. A long TMO consultation followed before Purdy was deemed to have had a foot in touch.
But they weren’t to be denied a deserved fourth try, with O’Conor forcing the ball loose and Uren scooping up and racing for the line.
A fantastic fifth followed – Luatua forcing the turnover and Earl ensuring he would be on the scoresheet to cap an 11th Gallagher Premiership win of the season.
A late melee saw Andrew Kitchener sent off for a cheap punch on the floor, while Siale Piutau was shown yellow, but it wasn’t enough to take the gloss off a rampant second half for the Bears.
Teams and scorers
Bristol Bears: C Piutau (Lloyd 40); Morahan, Radradra (O’Conor 58), S Piutau, Purdy; Sheedy, Randall (Uren 48); Lahiff (Woolmore 21), Byrne (Thacker 45), Sinckler (Afoa 45), Holmes, Vui, Luatua (c), D Thomas (Earl 48), Hughes (Joyce 66).
System players: Thacker, Woolmore, Afoa, Joyce, Earl, Uren, Lloyd, O’Conor.
Worcester Warriors: Nanai, Howe, Lawrence, Venter, Heward, Weir, Hougaard; Waller, Annett, Schonert, Bresler, Kitchener, Hill (C), Kvesic, du Preez.
Replacements: Miller, Black, Palframan, Kitchener, Cox, Simpson, Searle, Beck.
Worcester Warriors: Tries: Nanai 29, Cons: Weir 29, Pens: Weir 26, 34, Red: A Kitchener 79
Bristol Bears: Tries: Holmes 7, D Thomas 45, S Piutau 51, Uren 67, Earl 75, Cons: Sheedy 7, 51, 67, 75, Pens: Sheedy 39, Yellow: S Piutau 79
Trailing at the break, the Bears were in need of a big second-half display - and they certainly got it.
Dan Thomas' try got the ball rolling, but it was Siale Piutau's sensational score on 51 minutes that gave Lam's men was breathing space.
The centre raced on to Uren's pass to cruise in under the posts and set the Bears on the way to a bonus-point win on the road.
Pat Lam reaction
Man of the match: Semi Radradra
Just an absolute phenom.
Radradra was on the field just 60 minutes but still racked up an incredible 168 metres with ball in hand, wreaking havoc in the Warriors defence in a stunning hour-long display.
The Fijian made four clean breaks in yet another man of the match performance.
Social media reaction
After 1️⃣4️⃣ years...— Bristol Bears (@BristolBears) September 4, 2020
The curse of Sixways is finally over 😅 pic.twitter.com/oH0aeqHWCH
Radradra is quite good, to be fair.— Andrew Baldock (@balders2) September 4, 2020
Radradra break. Radradra break. Redradra break.... uuuuhh think my tv is broken🤷🏼♀️— Danielle Meredith (but mostly staying home) (@daniellemered_) September 4, 2020
Great way to bounce back 👍🐻— Jon Lansdown (@JonLansdown) September 4, 2020
Hope Harry’s ok
☝️ the 🐻s https://t.co/4VAovNF8PW
- Weir (2)
- Yellow Cards:
- Red Cards:
- Piutau, Holmes, Thomas, Earl, Uren
- Sheedy (4)
- Yellow Cards:
- Red Cards: