Human endeavour brings Saints to earth

Bath 42 Northampton 13

Bath made it something of an Australian double yesterday. In the wake of the Wallabies' World Cup semi-final triumph over the All Blacks, the one-time KO kings rewarded their Aussie coaching team of John Connolly and Brian Smith with victory over Northampton, whose coach is the New Zealander Wayne Smith.

It was not a classic, maybe, but it was keenly fought, and Bath were reduced to 14 men for a quarter of the match after having two men shown yellow cards. Saints, the last side to win here, in March, were in the game for more than an hour, getting into great positions and creating chances enough to steal it, but then Bath turned it on and ran away with it.

The first half in particular was a stop-start affair and, judging by the irritating number of times the whistle sounded - generally when something interesting was boiling up for one team or the other - there might well be a case for issuing referees with a silent version, the sort used by dog owners. At least then the players would be allowed to carry on, and the referee would have satisfied himself by sounding off, soundlessly.

Bath were the chief transgressors, although both sides had a man in the sin-bin before the first half was out, but by then Bath had scored an all-important first try when Wylie Human, their right- winger, latched on to a Nick Beal pass intended for Bruce Reihana. The Blue Bulls flier tore up the middle unmolested for 45 metres and presented Olly Barkley with a simple conversion.

Saints, for whom Shane Drahm had landed a couple of penalties, came out firing after the interval. Reihana kicked ahead and Martyn Wood fell on the ball on the line, only for it to squirt out cruelly. Reihana, following up, had the simplest of touchdowns. Two minutes later Bath cancelled it out. They won a line-out and the ball flew out flat and fast to Barkley, who popped up a pass for the centre Robbie Kydd. The 21-year-old Australian muscled his way through a couple of attempted tackles to dive over.

Simon Danielli, back from World Cup duty with Scotland, went into the sin-bin, but Saints failed to take advantage of the extra man and shortly after Danielli's return the disappointingly modest crowd of 5,723 saw Zak Feaunati, James Scaysbrook and finally Danielli himself cross in rapid succession to complete the rout. Bath, who last won the Cup in 1996, are through to the quarter-finals for the first time in five years.

Bath: M Perry (P Sampson, 71); W Human, R Kydd, A Higgins, J Williams (S Danielli, 29); O Barkley, M Wood (H Martens, 71); D Flatman, J Humphreys (capt, L Mears, 62), D Bell (M Stevens, 62), S Borthwick, R Fidler, A Beattie, I Feaunati (S Gray, 71), M Lipman (J Scaysbrook, 68).

Northampton: N Beal; J Brooks, C Hyndman, J Leslie (co-capt), B Reihana; S Drahm (J Sleightholme, 71), J Howard (B Jones, 76); R Morris (B Sturgess, 49-71), D Richmond (M Miles, 68), C Budgen (B Sturgess, 3-6), M Lord (G Seely, 59), R Hunter (J Phillips, 62), M Connors, A Blowers (co-capt), D Fox.

Referee: A Rowden (Reading).


  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

Bread from heaven

Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

How 'the Axe' helped Labour

UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power
Rare and exclusive video shows the horrific price paid by activists for challenging the rule of jihadist extremists in Syria

The price to be paid for challenging the rule of extremists

A revolution now 'consuming its own children'
Welcome to the world of Megagames

Welcome to the world of Megagames

300 players take part in Watch the Skies! board game in London
'Nymphomaniac' actress reveals what it was really like to star in one of the most explicit films ever

Charlotte Gainsbourg on 'Nymphomaniac'

Starring in one of the most explicit films ever
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers

Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi

The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers
Vince Cable interview: Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'

Vince Cable exclusive interview

Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'
Iwan Rheon interview: Game of Thrones star returns to his Welsh roots to record debut album

Iwan Rheon is returning to his Welsh roots

Rheon is best known for his role as the Bastard of Bolton. It's gruelling playing a sadistic torturer, he tells Craig McLean, but it hasn't stopped him recording an album of Welsh psychedelia
Russell Brand's interview with Ed Miliband has got everyone talking about The Trews

Everyone is talking about The Trews

Russell Brand's 'true news' videos attract millions of viewers. But today's 'Milibrand' interview introduced his resolutely amateurish style to a whole new crowd
Morne Hardenberg interview: Cameraman for BBC's upcoming show Shark on filming the ocean's most dangerous predator

It's time for my close-up

Meet the man who films great whites for a living
Increasing numbers of homeless people in America keep their mobile phones on the streets

Homeless people keep mobile phones

A homeless person with a smartphone is a common sight in the US. And that's creating a network where the 'hobo' community can share information - and fight stigma - like never before
'Queer saint' Peter Watson left his mark on British culture by bankrolling artworld giants

'Queer saint' who bankrolled artworld giants

British culture owes a huge debt to Peter Watson, says Michael Prodger
Pushkin Prizes: Unusual exchange programme aims to bring countries together through culture

Pushkin Prizes brings countries together

Ten Scottish schoolchildren and their Russian peers attended a creative writing workshop in the Highlands this week
14 best kids' hoodies

14 best kids' hoodies

Don't get caught out by that wind on the beach. Zip them up in a lightweight top to see them through summer to autumn
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The acceptable face of the Emirates

The acceptable face of the Emirates

Has Abu Dhabi found a way to blend petrodollars with principles, asks Robert Fisk