Aviva Premiership round-up: Exeter back on song with late flourish


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The Independent Online

After a tough and unrewarding run, normal service was resumed as Exeter eventually wrapped up a convincing victory over Worcester to remain unbeaten at Sandy Park in the Aviva Premiership this season.

It was a patchy performance, which was understandable after defeats by Leinster and Clermont Auvergne in the Heineken Cup and away to Bath in the Premiership last weekend. But Gonzalo Camacho settled them with a try after five minutes and they led 19-3 at the interval, courtesy of 14 points from the boot of Gareth Steenson.

It all went rather quiet after the break, with Andy Goode chipping away at Worcester's deficit with his second and third penalties, but then Exeter produced a final flourish, with Haydn Thomas and Chris Budgen making absolutely sure for the Chiefs with a late try apiece.

Exeter took the lead after full-back Luke Arscott put a grubber kick through and wing Camacho hacked on and won the chase for the try- line. Fly-half Steenson added the extras and then made the most of kicking with the wind

Goode reduced the arrears just before the break after a high tackle, with seemed to inspire the Warriors. Their second-half pressure eventually drew penalties for Goode to kick, but then Exeter held firm before adding the late tries.

Danie Poolman scored a try on his debut at outside-centre as Connacht defeated Treviso 18-3 in a dour RaboDirect Pro12 match played in heavy rain and a strong wind at the Sportsground.

It took a late try from their new wing Kristian Phillips to allow an understrength Scarlets side to subdue the Pro12 newcomers Zebre 22-13. The Italian side were ahead 6-3 at the interval and were leading 13-12 before Phillips struck.

Saracens face London Wasps today in their first match of the season at Watford after "home" games at Twickenham, Wembley and in Brussels. Shorn of England players, they have Charlie Hodgson back at fly-half while Chris Wyles, James Short and Kameli Ratuvou come into the back-line.

Wasps, coming off a run of four victories in various competitions, also make changes, with Chris Bell and Elliot Daly paired in the centre and T Rhys Thomas starting at hooker.

England's women opened their series of four autumn internationals yesterday with a 23-13 victory over France at Esher. They next face New Zealand at Esher on 23 November.