MX23RW : Wednesday, January 23 01:50:25
Jan 5, 2019 at 3pm UK at ​Sixways Stadium
WorcesterWorcester Warriors
21-19
BathBath Rugby
Heem (58', 81')
FT
Mercer (33')

Result: Worcester fight back to edge victory against Bath

Result: Worcester fight back to edge victory against Bath
© Reuters
Bath denied during frantic finish at Sixways.

Worcester staged an astonishing fightback to defeat 11-man Bath 21-19 at Sixways.

Bath had replacement hooker Ross Batty sent off for a dangerous tackle at a ruck 16 minutes from time, before Worcester laid siege.

And the visitors then saw three players sin-binned – Max Lahiff, Lucas Noguera and Aled Brew – in rapid succession during 18 minutes of additional time as Worcester laid siege through a succession of scrums.

And in the end, wing Bryce Heem went over for his second try, which fly-half Duncan Weir, who also kicked three penalties, converted to snatch a dramatic win.

Worcester trailed 19-3 at half time, before an opening Heem try hinted at a comeback that ultimately set up a remarkable finish.

The Warriors' brittle confidence surfaced earlier as Bath took command through a try by England international back-row forward Zach Mercer, plus 14 points from fly-half Freddie Burns.

But Worcester recovered impressively to leave Bath frantically hanging on at the end during several close-range scrums before claiming a pulsating win.

Prop Nick Schonert and lock Michael Fatialofa both returned to the Worcester line-up after missing last weekend's defeat against Saracens, while Bath included wing Cooper Vuna against his former club and scrum-half Will Chudley captained the side.

And Bath dominated the early stages, looking to get Wales international centre Jamie Roberts into the action, and Worcester were guilty of several errors, with their kicking game lacking accuracy.

Burns kicked two penalties to give Bath a 6-0 lead after 18 minutes, and Worcester were not at the races, pressing the self-destruct button just two minutes later.

Referee Ian Tempest sin-binned Fatialofa following a ruck offence, temporarily reducing Worcester to 14 men before Burns booted a close-range penalty that completed his hat-trick.

Warriors full-back Chris Pennell then missed a 50-metre penalty chance to open his team's account, but Weir found the target shortly afterwards as Fatialofa rejoined the action with no serious damage done by Bath during his 10-minute absence.

Bath, though, switched up a gear and should have scored when Roberts' superb long pass cut open the Worcester defence, but full-back James Wilson could not ground possession under pressure from Warriors flanker Ted Hill's tackle.

It was a huge reprieve for the home side, yet Bath punished them from their next attack as Mercer powered over following pressure near Worcester's line, with Burns' conversion opening a 13-point lead.

Worcester looked to have completely lost their way, and another Burns penalty – his fourth – just before half time, gave Warriors a mountain to climb, trailing by 16 points at the break.

Weir opened the second-half scoring through a 48th-minute penalty, which was the cue for a sustained spell of Worcester pressure as they looked to make inroads and create a contest.

And they further cut the gap 10 minutes later, producing some slick passing along the back-line before a flowing move ended with Heem outstripping Bath's defence for a high-class try.

Weir could not convert, but Warriors were back in contention entering the final quarter, suddenly asking questions of Bath they had failed to raise earlier in the game.

And Bath then saw Batty sent off – referee Tempeset showing a red card after repeated views of television replays – giving the game another unexpected turn as the visitors continued to unravel.

And then came the final stages that will live long ion the memory.

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