Paul protects the citadel

Gloucester 24 Leeds 19

The walls of Fortress Kingsholm had to withstand a battering from Leeds and gale force winds from the whistle of debutant referee Sean Davey before the Cherry and Whites were able to trot off the pitch with their unbeaten home record intact. It is now more than two years since Gloucester last tasted defeat in competitive rugby at Kingsholm - against Leicester in September 2001 - but they came close to losing yesterday, falling foul of Mr Davey an incredible 20 times, as well as thoroughly messing up their line-outs.

They still deserved victory. In their flanker Andy Hazell they had a blur of perpetual motion for the hour or so that he was on the field, up front they had a so-solid crew and out wide a far superior strikeforce - the wonder of it was that they missed a fourth try and a bonus point. Henry Paul directed events with his customary cunning, but there was not a lot that could be done about the stop-start nature of the game. At least they now boast those 34 home victories on the trot - 24 of them in the Premiership.

Although the well-organised Leeds forwards managed to shock their opponents early on at the set piece and the line-out, it was Gloucester who supplied the electricity that jump-started the match. Indeed the Leeds line-out went to pieces as the match progressed. Two tries in five minutes by forgotten England wing James Simpson-Daniel and a third after half an hour by the turbo-charged No 8 James Forrester had a packed Kingsholm screaming approval.

Simpson-Daniel looked to have clinched his hat-trick but was adjudged to have knocked on in attempting to ground Paul's clever grubber-kick through the Leeds defence. But his first two touchdowns were very good. Duncan McRae set up the first with a lightning break left that was followed by a perfect pass to give the Gloucester dasher a clear, and brief, run to the line.

The second came after more Cherry and Whites pressure that finally saw Paul sling out a long pass to Robert Todd. The muscular centre found Simpson-Daniel steaming up, scenting further fodder. He scorched through one despairing tackle before stepping precisely inside a transfixed Phil Christophers. Just a couple of minutes later Gloucester's other speedster, Marcel Garvey, was put away by Todd's long pass but he faltered just short of the line after a sizzling run that had outstripped the floundering Leeds cover.

Forrester, though, made no mistake when he thundered on to a pass at a tap penalty and crashed over. It was a good thing that Paul had converted all three though, because the dogged Tykes kept on snapping and chivvying.

They were well rewarded too. Duncan Hodge landed two penalties and then converted scrum-half Alan Dickens's soft try from a five-metre scrum on the stroke of half-time. Midway through the second half the gap was further closed by a third Hodge penalty, though it was swiftly countered by Paul's first success at his third attempt.

Until then Gloucester had been frustrated in their quest for the all-important fourth try. They were not helped by conceding a string of penalties to the eagle-eyed Mr Davey. That is what let Leeds straight back in again, as Hodge knocked over his fourth goal.

Gloucester 24
Tries: Simpson-Daniel 2, Forrester
Cons: Paul 3
Pen: Paul

Leeds 19
Try: Dickens
Con: Hodge
Pens: Hodge 4

Half-time: 21-13 Attendance: 9,832

Gloucester: J Goodridge (S Amor, 58); M Garvey, R Todd (J Frape, 40), H Paul, J Simpson-Daniel; D McRae, A Page; P Johnstone (A Olver, 71), C Fortey, A Deacon, A Brown, M Cornwell (A Eustace, 60), J Boer (capt), J Forrester, A Hazell (P Buxton, 63).

Leeds: T Walsh; D Scarbrough, P Christophers, T Davies, D Rees; D Hodge, A Dickens (R Walker, 75); M Shelley (capt), R Rawlinson, S Halford (M Holt, 64), S Hooper, P Murphy, M Salter, D Hyde (S Morgan 17-24), J Ponton.

Referee: S Davey (Horsham).

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Teeth should be brushed twice a day to prevent tooth decay
Bryan Cranston as Walter White, in the acclaimed series 'Breaking Bad'
footballChelsea 6 Maribor 0: Blues warm up for Premier League showdown with stroll in Champions League - but Mourinho is short of strikers
Those who were encouraged to walk in a happy manner remembered less negative words
Arts and Entertainment
Princess Olga in 'You Can't Get the Staff'
tvReview: The anachronistic aristocrats, it seemed, were just happy to have some attention
Renee Zellweger as Bridget Jones
Life and Style

Board creates magnetic field to achieve lift

There have been various incidents of social media users inadvertently flouting the law

Life and Style
Stack ‘em high?: quantity doesn’t always trump quality, as Friends of the Earth can testify
techThe proliferation of online petitions allows us to register our protests at the touch of a button. But do they change anything?
Bourgogne wine maker Laboure-Roi vice president Thibault Garin (L) offers the company's 2013 Beaujolais Nouveau wine to the guest in the wine spa at the Hakone Yunessun spa resort facilities in Hakone town, Kanagawa prefecture, some 100-kilometre west of Tokyo
CSKA Moscow celebrate after equalising with a late penalty
footballCSKA Moscow 2 Manchester City 2: Premier League champions let two goal lead slip in Russia
Caption competition
Caption competition
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

Indiana serial killer? Man arrested for murdering teenage prostitute confesses to six other murders - and police fear there could be many more

A new American serial killer?

Police fear man arrested for murder of teen prostitute could be responsible for killing spree dating back 20 years
Sweetie, the fake 10-year-old girl designed to catch online predators, claims her first scalp

Sting to trap paedophiles may not carry weight in UK courts

Computer image of ‘Sweetie’ represented entrapment, experts say
Fukushima nuclear crisis: Evacuees still stuck in cramped emergency housing three years on - and may never return home

Return to Fukushima – a land they will never call home again

Evacuees still stuck in cramped emergency housing three years on from nuclear disaster
Wildlife Photographer of the Year: Intimate image of resting lions claims top prize

Wildlife Photographer of the Year

Intimate image of resting lions claims top prize
Online petitions: Sign here to change the world

Want to change the world? Just sign here

The proliferation of online petitions allows us to register our protests at the touch of a button. But do they change anything?
Ed Sheeran hits back after being labelled too boring to headline festivals

'You need me, I don’t need you'

Ed Sheeran hits back after being labelled too boring to headline festivals
How to Get Away with Murder: Shonda Rhimes reinvents the legal drama

How to Get Away with Murder

Shonda Rhimes reinvents the legal drama
A cup of tea is every worker's right

Hard to swallow

Three hospitals in Leicester have banned their staff from drinking tea and coffee in public areas. Christopher Hirst explains why he thinks that a cuppa is every worker's right
Which animals are nearly extinct?

Which animals are nearly extinct?

Conservationists in Kenya are in mourning after the death of a white northern rhino, which has left the species with a single male. These are the other species on the brink
12 best children's shoes

Perfect for leaf-kicking: 12 best children's shoes

Find footwear perfect to keep kids' feet protected this autumn
Anderlecht vs Arsenal: Gunners' ray of light Aaron Ramsey shines again

Arsenal’s ray of light ready to shine again

Aaron Ramsey’s injury record has prompted a club investigation. For now, the midfielder is just happy to be fit to face Anderlecht in the Champions League
Comment: David Moyes' show of sensitivity thrown back in his face by former Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson

Moyes’ show of sensitivity thrown back in his face... by Ferguson

Manchester United legend tramples on successor who resisted criticising his inheritance
Two super-sized ships have cruised into British waters, but how big can these behemoths get?

Super-sized ships: How big can they get?

Two of the largest vessels in the world cruised into UK waters last week
British doctors on brink of 'cure' for paralysis with spinal cord treatment

British doctors on brink of cure for paralysis

Sufferers can now be offered the possibility of cure thanks to a revolutionary implant of regenerative cells
Ranked seventh in world’s best tourist cities - not London, or Edinburgh, but Salisbury

Lonely Planet’s Best in Travel 2015

UK city beats Vienna, Paris and New York to be ranked seventh in world’s best tourist destinations - but it's not London