Blues beaten at Bath
Bath Rugby 26 Cardiff Blues 8
Friday 24 August 7.30pm kick off
With the rain lashing at the Rec it wasn’t the best of conditions for open rugby. Barkley missed an early attempt at goal but the home side was dominating the opening quarter, gaining good territory through the boot of Barkley, with the Blues failing to get out of their own half. Eventually they got on the scoreboard with a straightforward penalty after the Blues drifted offside.
Bath extended their lead after an extended period of pressure in the Blues twenty-two. Tovey’s clearance was charged down which allowed the Bath forwards and backs to combine well before Tom Biggs came into the line and fed Fearns who put Barkley in to score. The outside half also added the extras.
The Blues got back in it through Cuthbert. Bath looked to spread the ball just inside their own half but Wilson fumbled the ball and Cuthbert hacked ahead. The big winger had enough speed to beat Biggs to the line and touch down. Tovey was wide with the conversion.
Bath Rugby 10 Cardiff Blues 5
The Blues made a couple of changes in the backs early in the second half with Davies coming on for Tovey and Adam Thomas making his debut at centre, coming on for Patchell.
Naturally in a pre season game there was no urgency on the pitch and the match lost any momentum that had been built in the first half.
Davies slotted a penalty in front of the posts after Bath were caught offside to bring the gap to two points at 10-8 but Barkley was again equal to the task with an equally simple effort in front of the posts.
Barkley soon after extended the lead to 19-8 with a long distance effort and a simpler one in front of the posts. Bath were beginning to turn the screw and the match was finished in the 70th minute. The home side spread the ball right to Eastmond who showed great pace before flipping the ball inside to Jack Cuthbert to finish the move in the corner. Barkley again added the extras to crown a fine individual performance and bring the final score to 26-8.
Cardiff Blues 15. Leigh Halfpenny (50off) 14. Alex Cuthbert (76off) 13. Cory Allen 12. Rhys Patchell (40off) 11. Harry Robinson 10. Jason Tovey (45off) 9. Lloyd Williams (72off)
8. Andries Pretorius (c) (62off) 7. Sam Warburton 6. Rory Watts-Jones (62off) 5. Lou Reed 4. Bradley Davies 3. Taufa'ao Filise (75off) 2. Andi Kyriacou (70off) 1. Nathan Trevett (70off)
16 Rhys Williams (70off) 17 Tom Davies (70on) 18 Scott Andrews (75on) 19 Macauley Cook (62on) 20 Thomas Young 21 Lewis Jones (72on) 22 Gareth Davies (45on) 23 Tom Williams (76on) 24 Adam Thomas (40on) 25 Josh Navidi 26 Robin Copeland 27 Luke Hamilton (62on) 28 Dan Fish (50on)
Bath Rugby 15. Nick Abendanon; 14. Tom Biggs, 13. Dan Hipkiss, 12. Matt Banahan, 11. Kyle Eastmond; 10. Olly Barkley, 9. Michael Claassens;
1. Paul James, 2. Lee Mears, 3. David Wilson, 4. Stuart Hooper ( c ), 5. Dominic Day, 6. Carl Fearns, 7. Francois Louw, 8. Ben Skirving
16. Ross Batty, 17. Nathan Catt, 18. Kane Palma-Newport, 19. Dave Attwood, 20. Will Skuse, 21. Chris Cook, 22. Ollie Devoto, 23. Olly Woodburn, 24. Jack Cuthbert
Tries Cuthbert x 1
Pens Davies x 1
Tries Barkley x 1 Cuthbert x 1
Pen Barkley x 4
Con Barkley x 2