Simpson-Daniel is too hot for Bath

Gloucester 36 Bath 27
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The Independent Online

Gloucester's crucial try-scoring bonus point was not as important as sending their West Country neighbours home with nothing. James Simpson-Daniel, scorer of two of his side's four tries and the architect of a third against title rivals Bath at Kingsholm on Saturday said: "We were treating that bonus point almost like a win, because that could be a big point at the end of the season."

If England decide that Simpson-Daniel (right) deserves another go in an international shirt now looks a good time. The 26-year-old is at the top of his game, as he showed in a staggering four-minute spell in the first half when he scored two tries and set up another.

But by the time he had crossed the line after an interception and a 60-metre sprint for his second, and the third of that murderous spell, Simpson-Daniel could not move that well.

"I got tackled about a quarter of an hour into the match, and as I got up I felt a pain in my side and it got worse as I played," he said. "Then a ball came over the top and I had no choice but to pin my ears back. But it was a struggle." His injury was first thought to be a kidney problem, but after the match became a pulled muscle in his side and he should be fit to face Leicester at the weekend.

Given the pace and physicality of the match it is surprising that there were so few injuries, but there were plenty of tries, seven in all, and a full house of cards, four yellow and one red, this last going to the Bath captain Alex Crockett for a second sin-bin offence.

Gloucester: Tries Simpson-Daniel 2, Sharples, Lawson; Conversions Spencer, Barkley; Penalties Spencer, Barkley 3. Bath: Tries Hawkins 2, Higgins; Conversions James 3; Penalties James 2.

Gloucester: O Morgan; I Balshaw, J Simpson-Daniel (O Barkley, 39), A Allen, C Sharples; C Spencer, R Lawson; N Wood, O Azam, G Somerville, A Eustace, A Brown, A Satala, A Hazell (J Forster, 73), G Delve (capt).

Bath: J Maddock; A Higgins, A Crockett (capt), E Fuimaono-Sapolu (S Berne, 80+2), M Banahan; B James, M Claassens (S Bemand, 3); D Barnes, R Hawkins, D Bell, J Harrison, P Short, A Beattie, J Scaysbrook, D Browne (J Faamatauinu, 34-ht).

Referee: W Barnes (London).