Guinness Premiership 06/07

Discussion in 'Premiership Rugby / Premiership Cup' started by Bullitt, Jun 21, 2006.


Who's Gonna Win?

  1. Sale Sharks

    0 vote(s)
  2. Leicester Tigers

    0 vote(s)
  3. London Wasps

    0 vote(s)
  4. London Irish

    0 vote(s)
  5. Gloucester Rugby

    0 vote(s)
  6. Northampton Saints

    0 vote(s)
  7. Newcastle Falcons

    0 vote(s)
  8. Worcester Warriors

    0 vote(s)
  9. Bristol Rugby

    0 vote(s)
  10. Saracens

    0 vote(s)
  11. Bath Rugby

  12. NEC Harlequins

    0 vote(s)
  1. Bullitt

    Bullitt Guest

    Round 1

    1/2/3 Sep TBC Gloucester Rugby v Bath Rugby Kingsholm

    1/2/3 Sep TBC Leicester Tigers v Sale Sharks Welford Road

    1/2/3 Sep TBC Northampton Saints v Newcastle Falcons Franklin's Gardens

    Sat 2nd Sep 06 14:00 London Irish v NEC Harlequins Twickenham

    Sat 2nd Sep 06 15:00 Worcester Warriors v Bristol Rugby Sixways

    Sat 2nd Sep 06 16:20 Saracens v London Wasps Twickenham

    Round 2

    8/9/10 Sep TBC Bath Rugby v Leicester Tigers Recreation Ground

    8/9/10 Sep TBC Bristol Rugby v Saracens Memorial Stadium

    8/9/10 Sep TBC London Wasps v London Irish Causeway Stadium

    8/9/10 Sep TBC NEC Harlequins v Gloucester Rugby The Stoop

    8/9/10 Sep TBC Newcastle Falcons v Worcester Warriors Kingston Park

    8/9/10 Sep TBC Sale Sharks v Northampton Saints Edgeley Park

    Round 3

    15/16/17 Sep TBC Leicester Tigers v Gloucester Rugby Welford Road

    15/16/17 Sep TBC London Irish v Bristol Rugby Madejski Stadium

    15/16/17 Sep TBC London Wasps v NEC Harlequins Causeway Stadium

    15/16/17 Sep TBC Northampton Saints v Bath Rugby Franklin's Gardens

    15/16/17 Sep TBC Saracens v Newcastle Falcons Vicarage Road

    Fri 15th Sep 06 20:00 Worcester Warriors v Sale Sharks Sixways

    Round 4

    22/23/24 Sep TBC Bath Rugby v Worcester Warriors Recreation Ground

    22/23/24 Sep TBC Bristol Rugby v London Wasps Memorial Stadium

    22/23/24 Sep TBC Gloucester Rugby v Northampton Saints Kingsholm

    22/23/24 Sep TBC NEC Harlequins v Leicester Tigers The Stoop

    22/23/24 Sep TBC Newcastle Falcons v London Irish Kingston Park

    22/23/24 Sep TBC Sale Sharks v Saracens Edgeley Park

    Round 5

    13/14/15 Oct TBC Bristol Rugby v NEC Harlequins Memorial Stadium

    13/14/15 Oct TBC London Irish v Sale Sharks Madejski Stadium

    13/14/15 Oct TBC London Wasps v Newcastle Falcons Causeway Stadium

    13/14/15 Oct TBC Northampton Saints v Leicester Tigers Franklin's Gardens

    13/14/15 Oct TBC Saracens v Bath Rugby Vicarage Road

    Sat 14th Oct 06 15:00 Worcester Warriors v Gloucester Rugby Sixways

    Round 6

    3/4/5 Nov TBC Bath Rugby v London Irish Recreation Ground

    3/4/5 Nov TBC Gloucester Rugby v Saracens Kingsholm

    3/4/5 Nov TBC Leicester Tigers v Worcester Warriors Welford Road

    3/4/5 Nov TBC NEC Harlequins v Northampton Saints The Stoop

    3/4/5 Nov TBC Newcastle Falcons v Bristol Rugby Kingston Park

    3/4/5 Nov TBC Sale Sharks v London Wasps Edgeley Park

    Round 7

    10/11/12 Nov TBC Bristol Rugby v Sale Sharks Memorial Stadium

    10/11/12 Nov TBC London Irish v Gloucester Rugby Madejski Stadium

    10/11/12 Nov TBC London Wasps v Bath Rugby Causeway Stadium

    10/11/12 Nov TBC Newcastle Falcons v NEC Harlequins Kingston Park

    10/11/12 Nov TBC Saracens v Leicester Tigers Vicarage Road

    Sat 11th Nov 06 15:00 Worcester Warriors v Northampton Saints Sixways

    Round 8

    17/18/19 Nov TBC Bath Rugby v Bristol Rugby Recreation Ground

    17/18/19 Nov TBC Gloucester Rugby v London Wasps Kingsholm

    17/18/19 Nov TBC Leicester Tigers v London Irish Welford Road

    17/18/19 Nov TBC NEC Harlequins v Worcester Warriors The Stoop

    17/18/19 Nov TBC Northampton Saints v Saracens Franklin's Gardens

    17/18/19 Nov TBC Sale Sharks v Newcastle Falcons Edgeley Park

    Round 9

    24/25/26 Nov TBC Bath Rugby v Newcastle Falcons Recreation Ground

    24/25/26 Nov TBC Bristol Rugby v Gloucester Rugby Memorial Stadium

    24/25/26 Nov TBC London Irish v Northampton Saints Madejski Stadium

    24/25/26 Nov TBC London Wasps v Leicester Tigers Causeway Stadium

    24/25/26 Nov TBC Sale Sharks v NEC Harlequins Edgeley Park

    24/25/26 Nov TBC Saracens v Worcester Warriors Vicarage Road

    Round 10

    Fri 22nd Dec 06 TBC Bath Rugby v Sale Sharks Recreation Ground

    Fri 22nd Dec 06 TBC Gloucester Rugby v Newcastle Falcons Kingsholm

    Fri 22nd Dec 06 TBC Leicester Tigers v Bristol Rugby Welford Road

    Fri 22nd Dec 06 TBC NEC Harlequins v Saracens The Stoop

    Fri 22nd Dec 06 TBC Northampton Saints v London Wasps Franklin's Gardens

    Fri 22nd Dec 06 20:00 Worcester Warriors v London Irish Sixways

    Round 11

    26/27 Dec TBC Bristol Rugby v Bath Rugby Memorial Stadium

    26/27 Dec TBC London Irish v Leicester Tigers Madejski Stadium

    26/27 Dec TBC London Wasps v Gloucester Rugby Causeway Stadium

    26/27 Dec TBC Newcastle Falcons v Sale Sharks Kingston Park

    26/27 Dec TBC Saracens v Northampton Saints Vicarage Road

    Wed 27th Dec 06 20:00 Worcester Warriors v NEC Harlequins Sixways

    Round 12

    31 Dec, 1 Jan TBC Bath Rugby v London Wasps Recreation Ground

    31 Dec, 1 Jan TBC Gloucester Rugby v London Irish Kingsholm

    31 Dec, 1 Jan TBC Leicester Tigers v Saracens Welford Road

    31 Dec, 1 Jan TBC NEC Harlequins v Newcastle Falcons The Stoop

    31 Dec, 1 Jan TBC Northampton Saints v Worcester Warriors Franklin's Gardens

    31 Dec, 1 Jan TBC Sale Sharks v Bristol Rugby Edgeley Park

    Round 13

    6/7 Jan TBC Bristol Rugby v Northampton Saints Memorial Stadium

    6/7 Jan TBC London Irish v Saracens Madejski Stadium

    6/7 Jan TBC London Wasps v Worcester Warriors Causeway Stadium

    6/7 Jan TBC NEC Harlequins v Bath Rugby The Stoop

    6/7 Jan TBC Newcastle Falcons v Leicester Tigers Kingston Park

    6/7 Jan TBC Sale Sharks v Gloucester Rugby Edgeley Park

    Round 14

    26/27/28 Jan TBC Bath Rugby v NEC Harlequins Recreation Ground

    26/27/28 Jan TBC Gloucester Rugby v Sale Sharks Kingsholm

    26/27/28 Jan TBC Leicester Tigers v Newcastle Falcons Welford Road

    26/27/28 Jan TBC Northampton Saints v Bristol Rugby Franklin's Gardens

    26/27/28 Jan TBC Saracens v London Irish Vicarage Road

    Fri 26th Jan 07 20:00 Worcester Warriors v London Wasps Sixways

    Round 15

    16/17/18 Feb TBC Bristol Rugby v Newcastle Falcons Memorial Stadium

    16/17/18 Feb TBC London Irish v Bath Rugby Madejski Stadium

    16/17/18 Feb TBC London Wasps v Sale Sharks Causeway Stadium

    16/17/18 Feb TBC Northampton Saints v NEC Harlequins Franklin's Gardens

    16/17/18 Feb TBC Saracens v Gloucester Rugby Vicarage Road

    Fri 16th Feb 07 20:00 Worcester Warriors v Leicester Tigers Sixways

    Round 16

    23/24/25 Feb TBC Bath Rugby v Saracens Recreation Ground

    23/24/25 Feb TBC Gloucester Rugby v Worcester Warriors Kingsholm

    23/24/25 Feb TBC Leicester Tigers v Northampton Saints Welford Road

    23/24/25 Feb TBC NEC Harlequins v Bristol Rugby The Stoop

    23/24/25 Feb TBC Newcastle Falcons v London Wasps Kingston Park

    23/24/25 Feb TBC Sale Sharks v London Irish Edgeley Park

    Round 17

    2/3/4 Mar TBC Leicester Tigers v NEC Harlequins Welford Road

    2/3/4 Mar TBC London Irish v Newcastle Falcons Madejski Stadium

    2/3/4 Mar TBC London Wasps v Bristol Rugby Causeway Stadium

    2/3/4 Mar TBC Northampton Saints v Gloucester Rugby Franklin's Gardens

    2/3/4 Mar TBC Saracens v Sale Sharks Vicarage Road

    Sat 3rd Mar 07 15:00 Worcester Warriors v Bath Rugby Sixways

    Round 18

    9/10/11 Mar TBC Bath Rugby v Northampton Saints Recreation Ground

    9/10/11 Mar TBC Bristol Rugby v London Irish Memorial Stadium

    9/10/11 Mar TBC Gloucester Rugby v Leicester Tigers Kingsholm

    9/10/11 Mar TBC NEC Harlequins v London Wasps The Stoop

    9/10/11 Mar TBC Newcastle Falcons v Saracens Kingston Park

    9/10/11 Mar TBC Sale Sharks v Worcester Warriors Edgeley Park

    Round 19

    16/17/18 Mar TBC Gloucester Rugby v NEC Harlequins Kingsholm

    16/17/18 Mar TBC Leicester Tigers v Bath Rugby Welford Road

    16/17/18 Mar TBC London Irish v London Wasps Madejski Stadium

    16/17/18 Mar TBC Northampton Saints v Sale Sharks Franklin's Gardens

    16/17/18 Mar TBC Saracens v Bristol Rugby Vicarage Road

    Fri 16th Mar 07 20:00 Worcester Warriors v Newcastle Falcons Sixways

    Round 20

    6/7/8 Apr TBC Bath Rugby v Gloucester Rugby Recreation Ground

    6/7/8 Apr TBC Bristol Rugby v Worcester Warriors Memorial Stadium

    6/7/8 Apr TBC London Wasps v Saracens Causeway Stadium

    6/7/8 Apr TBC NEC Harlequins v London Irish The Stoop

    6/7/8 Apr TBC Newcastle Falcons v Northampton Saints Kingston Park

    6/7/8 Apr TBC Sale Sharks v Leicester Tigers Edgeley Park

    Round 21

    13/14/15 Apr TBC Bristol Rugby v Leicester Tigers Memorial Stadium

    13/14/15 Apr TBC London Irish v Worcester Warriors Madejski Stadium

    13/14/15 Apr TBC London Wasps v Northampton Saints Causeway Stadium

    13/14/15 Apr TBC Newcastle Falcons v Gloucester Rugby Kingston Park

    13/14/15 Apr TBC Sale Sharks v Bath Rugby Edgeley Park

    13/14/15 Apr TBC Saracens v NEC Harlequins Vicarage Road

    Round 22

    28/29 Apr TBC Gloucester Rugby v Bristol Rugby Kingsholm

    28/29 Apr TBC Leicester Tigers v London Wasps Welford Road

    28/29 Apr TBC NEC Harlequins v Sale Sharks The Stoop

    28/29 Apr TBC Newcastle Falcons v Bath Rugby Kingston Park

    28/29 Apr TBC Northampton Saints v London Irish Franklin's Gardens

    Sat 28th Apr 07 15:00 Worcester Warriors v Saracens Sixways

    Round 23

    5/6 May TBC

    5/6 May TBC

    Round 24

    12/13 May TBC
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  3. Last season was a transitional phase, this year King Carlos is going to reign supreme.

    Robinson + Spencer + Quinlan + Clarke + Cohen + Lamont + Reihana = Winning formula.
  4. Muse_Cubed

    Muse_Cubed Guest

    Tiny-Thompson-Barnard will be SCARY

    Browne-Lord the usual workhorseness. Although lineout is suspect...:(

    Tupai-Harding-Browne are very good. Completely complementary it seems. Plus we have Ben Lewitt on the sidelines. Oh, and Angry. But we don't talk much about him.

    The pack is looking pretty good, apart from the lineout. It's a bit of a problem but I hope Short helps to offset our problems last season.

    Saints 4TW
  5. drico

    drico Guest

    I reckon Saints will be pretty strong contenders for the GP next year with the likes of Spencer, Lamont and Reihana at their disposal, especially if they carry the sizzling form which they held against Saracens last season
  6. MightyQuin

    MightyQuin Guest

    I'm hoping for mid-table with Quins this year ... a few good new signings with Abbott, Luscombe and Volley in the backs - but I fear the forwards will be too lightweight to mount any real challenge.

    As for Saints winning this year ... hmm ... not sure I can see it to be honest, they look great going forward when they have confidence, but they still seem a little weak defensively compared to the top teams.

    Mind you, looking at what the Irish did last year gives hope to anyone.

    My money would go on Wasps this year, with Glaws as an outside bet.
  7. That's very true of last season, although like our attack, it could have been down to the team taking time to gel. Defensive alignment probably takes longer to click than attack.

    Looking at our backs, the only defensively weak player in Spencer. Not too much goes through the middle, especially with Quinlan at 12, who is a rock in defense.

    I think the real thing we have to sort out is stopping teams creating overlaps against us. Happen far too often and easily last year, and if we can get that right then we have the personel to stop shipping so many points.
  8. Boy

    Boy Guest

    Volley's a flanker (or at least he has been for the past 10 years or so).

    No idea what to expect from Bath next season. Steve Meehan has been saying all the right things about how we're going to play, and we've got people like Martyn Wood, David Flatman and Matt Stevens back for a full pre-season. Watch out for Eliota Fuimaono; recovered from his knee injury and reportedly putting in steller performances for Samoa, the combination of Barkley/Fui'/Shaun Berne at 10/12/13 could mean that we do ok.

    It's a building year for the squad, mainly because it's an entirely new backroom and everyone will have to get used to each other. I'd be happy with a comfortable season in mid-table away from the scrap.
  9. St. Jamez

    St. Jamez Guest

    I hope to god you guys are right but I can't bring myself to vote Saints. I think we'll do better then last season, hopefully top 5 but I can't see us finishing ahead of Sale.
    I think either one of Leicester or Wasps are due a bad season. I also think Quins could surprise a few people with their seemingly good signings.
    Sorry to any Irish fans but I don't think they will have the season they did last time!

    Sods law now; Sale will be relegated, Irish win the GP with Leicester and Wasps meeting in the HC final!
  10. Bullitt

    Bullitt Guest

    Now why couldn't you be this down to earth on the offy?
  11. drico

    drico Guest

    Why couldn't your signature be this down to earth?
  12. Bullitt

    Bullitt Guest

    Excuse me?
  13. MightyQuin

    MightyQuin Guest

    Whoops, fair point! I meant to put "in the backs" before Volley's name ... but then again, I think he'd make a pretty mean centre actually - and no slower than Greenwood was this last season!
  14. Bullitt

    Bullitt Guest

    <div align="center">[​IMG] Gloucester Rugby 24 - 19 Bath Rugby[​IMG]
    Guinness Premiership | Sat, 02 Sep 06 15:00

    Gloucester edge derby battle


    Guinness Premiership, Kingsholm, Saturday September 2, 15.00

    Gloucester got their Premiership campaign off to a winning start with a 24-19 victory over Bath at Kingsholm.

    Despite suffering the late loss of Mike Tindall to a calf injury before kick-off, coach Dean Ryan's men battled hard for victory, scoring tries through Jack Adams and Olly Morgan.

    The Cherry-and-Whites featured four debutants in their starting line-up, including Iain Balshaw who had previously experienced the West Country derby atmosphere in the blue of Bath.

    Unfortunately, injuries once again blighted the England man's afternoon, and Balshaw headed off after 40 minutes with an ankle blow.

    It was the rather less high-profile inclusion of Willie Walker who made the key impact, the stand-off kicking 14 points to guide his team to victory.

    Two Danny Grewcock tries could not rescue the match for Bath, who were playing their first competitive match under the guidance of new head coach Steve Meehan.

    A late Olly Barkley penalty grabbed Meehan a losing bonus point, which was no more than they deserved after a hard-fought opening performance.

    Two sin-bins in quick succession cost the former European champions dear close to the interval, with Michael Stephenson following captain Steve Borthwick into the bin.

    Penalties dominated the first forty minutes as Gloucester took a 12-6 lead into the break, but the first try arrived immediately when the teams returned.

    Adams was the man to go over, but he owed an awful lot to the endeavour of flanker Andy Hazell.

    Grewcock then reduced the arrears from close range, but Bath were then undone by the kind of quality that could make Gloucester a real force this season.

    The Cherry-and-Whites had the visiting defence chasing shadows as they moved the ball swiftly from one flank to the other, with Morgan going over to clinch the match.

    Grewcock made a 20-yard dash late on to give Bath a flicker of hope, but it was Gloucester who triumphed in the rain. </div>

    <div align="center">[​IMG] Worcester Warriors 11 - 41 Bristol Rugby[​IMG]
    Guinness Premiership | Sat, 02 Sep 06 15:00

    Bristol off to a flyer


    Guinness Premiership, Sixways, Saturday September 2, 15.00
    Bristol got their Guinness Premiership season off to a flying start with a 41-11 victory at Worcester.

    The visitors outscored their hosts five tries to one, with Lee Robinson bagging two of those, while Jason Strange added four penalties and two conversions.

    Both sides are expected to struggle this season but Bristol got the upper hand on The Warriors for the first time in seven years.

    The game was marred when Worcester's Samoan centre Dale Rasmussen had to be carried off on a stretcher near the end after clashing heads with Bristol's Josh Taumalolo.

    Bristol took the lead early with two strange penalties, although Shane Drahm answered for Worcester with a penalty of his own.

    Former Wales lock Gareth Llewellyn grabbed the first try of the game as Bristol made their dominance count, and Strange added the extras for a 13-3 lead.

    Drahm kicked another penalty but Robinson bagged his first try when galloping on to Shaun Perry's chip over the Worcester defence.

    Second row Phil Murphy scored Worcester's only try of the match two minutes before the interval, but Drahm missed the conversion to see the hosts still behind 18-11.

    Strange missed two penalties in the second half as Warriors prop Chris Horsman was sin-binned for taking Llewellyn out at the lineout.

    Bristol were also down to 14 men minutes later when Salter was carded for persistent infringement.

    Strange added two penalties before Robinson added his second try after a fine back line movement from the visitors.

    Bristol bagged the bonus point as Chris Morgan celebrated his league debut to run in from 30 metres after intercepting a long pass.

    Perry then added the gloss on the scoreline by collecting Bristol's fifth try as the visitors hit the ground running this season. </div>

    <div align="center">[​IMG] London Irish 20 - 19 Harlequins[​IMG]
    Guinness Premiership | Sat, 02 Sep 06 14:00

    Flutey calls the tune for Exiles


    Guinness Premiership, Twickenham, Saturday, September 2

    Newly-promoted Harlequins were undone by a last-gasp penalty from London Irish fly-half Riki Flutey as the Exiles ran out 20-19 winners at Twickenham.

    The Quins looked to have snatched victory when Wales prop Ceri Jones went over with just seven minutes to play following a line-out drive.

    Replays on the temporary big screen, however, showed that lock Simon Miall had dropped the ball and justice was served by Flutey in the last minute of the game.

    Harlequins were ahead for much of the game, thanks to the boot of Adrian Jarvis who was called in as a late replacement for former New Zealand fly-half Andrew Mehrtens.

    The number 10 landed a couple of penalties to give his side a 6-0 lead within the first 10 minutes but, with the wind in their faces, Brian Smith's side looked the more dangerous side.

    And they almost grabbed a try when Flutey found a gap in the Quins defences but Mike Catt's pass just failed to find Delon Armitage on the touchline.

    Harlequins have added to their ranks in the off-season and new centre pairing Hal Luscombe and Stuart Abbott combined well to almost send in Mike Brown but Armitage was round to cover well.

    England international Abbott's next input was not so impressive as he was banished to the sin-bin after a late tackle on Paul Hodgson and Flutey reduced the arrears.

    The first try came through Topsy Ojo after Brown dropped the ball on his own line and Armitage was first to the ball to set up Ojo who found a gap to cross the line in the corner and the teams went into the break at 9-8 to the Quins after Jarvis added a third penalty after number eight Juan Leguizamon was sent to the sin-bin for punching.

    The lead became 12-8 with a fourth three-pointer from Jarvis after the interval.

    But Smith's men reacted well and, after raising the tempo, went clear after two penalties from Flutey before the fly-half knocked over a drop goal following good work by the pack.

    Jones then touched down to set up a dramatic climax and Flutey kept his nerve well after missing with his first effort but the second opportunity was sent straight through the posts.</div>

    <div align="center">[​IMG] Northampton Saints 25 - 23 Newcastle Falcons[​IMG]
    Guinness Premiership | Sun, 03 Sep 06 13:45

    Wilko miss hands Saints victory


    Guinness Premiership, Franklin's Gardens, Sunday September 3, 13.45

    Northampton Saints edged a see-saw battle against Newcastle Falcons, triumphing 25-23 thanks to a late Ben Cohen try.

    The Falcons fought back to lead for a long period in the second half after a desperate opening forty minutes, but Cohen crucially squeezed in at the corner with seven minutes remaining to claim the points for Saints.

    A packed Franklin's Gardens crowd greeted the sides as they emerged from the changing rooms, for a match that featured two of the most iconic fly-halves in world rugby: Carlos Spencer and Jonny Wilkinson.
    Two players markedly contrasting in style, the match was billed as a battle of Spencer's vision and intelligence against Wilkinson's metronomic accuracy and courage.

    In the end it was a missed Wilkinson penalty that handed Saints victory, although the Falcons' main cause for concern will be their work at the breakdown and line-out.

    Newcastle, under the guidance of new boss John Fletcher, went into the match missing several key names including Mathew Tait and influential lock Geoff Parling.

    The latter proved to be a big loss as Saints controlled the ball, allowing Spencer to conduct the Northampton backline.

    Bruce Reihana troubled the scorers first with a comfortable penalty, before the hosts turned the screw on the 15-minute mark.

    Refusing another three points in favour of a five-yard scrum, Saints applied the squeeze on the Newcastle pack before releasing David Quinlan to coast over underneath the posts.

    Moments later the visitors showed their better side, Toby Flood skating past a flat Northampton rearguard, only to then rush his pass to the unsuspecting Jamie Noon.

    Flood was enduring a testing opening half, and the talented England youngster forced another ambitious pass on 25 minutes, leaving Wilkinson to retreat 40 yards to mop up on his own line with Sean Lamont in hasty pursuit.

    Newcastle's number 10 then demonstrated his importance at the other end of the pitch, reducing the deficit to 13-6 before the break.

    Saints lost Jon Clarke to a suspected ankle injury in the closing moments of the half, Robbie Kydd slotting in at outside centre.

    Most of Newcastle's half-time discussion would have surrounded the need to secure more ball from the set-piece, yet their ability to gain turnover possession was never in question and they scored a breathtaking try seven minutes after the restart.

    Jamie Noon led the charge inside the Saints half, before back-row pair Brent Wilson and Ben Woods showed some subtle hands to feed Anthony Elliott in at the corner.

    Wilkinson missed the conversion to level, but within two minutes he converted an even sweeter move to nudge Newcastle ahead.

    Matt Burke, relatively quiet in the first 40 minutes, shimmied inside to release Flood who meandered up to the cusp of the whitewash, before popping the ball up for Wilkinson to score.

    Suddenly the contest had moved up two gears and the hosts came roaring back, attacking Newcastle's Achilles heel once again as the forwards surged towards the line.

    Paul Tupai was briefly frustrated as he was held up in the in-goal area, but from the re-set Mark Robinson was forced over for the 7th Premiership try of his career.

    More than an hour gone and with the scores level at 18 apiece it was time for Wilkinson and Woods to come to the fore once again, the latter in the perfect position out wide after the former had made a telling burst through the three-quarters.

    Coach Fletcher punched the air in delight, but his joy lasted five minutes as Saints struck back again, Darren Fox emulating Woods' efforts at loose forward to help Ben Cohen in at the corner.

    Reihana's conversion made it 25-23 to Northampton, and Wilkinson's wayward late penalty ensured things stayed that way as the hosts triumphed.</div>

    <div align="center">[​IMG] Leicester Tigers 35 - 23 Sale Sharks[​IMG]
    Guinness Premiership | Sun, 03 Sep 06 16:00

    Relentless Tigers rock champions


    Guinness Premiership, Welford Road, Sunday September 3, 16.00, live on Sky Sports 1

    Last season's beaten Premiership finalists Leicester scored a major psychological blow on the opening weekend of the campaign, beating defending champions Sale 35-23 at Welford Road.
    In a keenly contested fixture that belied any suggestions of match rustiness, the Tigers' superior team performance proved too much for the individual qualities in the Sale side.

    Led by the refreshed Martin Corry, the hosts ran in tries through Geordan Murphy, Louis Deacon and the skipper himself, before a penalty try clinched the game and the bonus point for hosts.

    Leicester's Harry Ellis was ruled out with a hamstring tweak ahead of kick-off, but individual duals still littered the lush Welford Road pitch as England's top two went head-to-head.

    England internationals Tom Varndell and Andy Goode stood opposite counterparts Mark Cueto and Charlie Hodgson, while Sebastien Chabal had Corry in his line of destruction.

    In last season's end-of-season showpiece, Hodgson was the major difference as he orchestrated the Sale attack, but this time he was upstaged by the endeavour of his international skipper Corry.

    Fired up by the memory of the 45-20 thumping they received at Twickenham back in May, the Tigers came roaring out of the blocks, swamping every ruck in pursuit of an early score.

    Goode failed to oblige with a highly-kickable penalty, and three minutes later Hodgson punished him with unerring accuracy.

    The momentum remained with Leicester though, and they deservedly went 7-3 ahead on 10 minutes as Murphy burst past Jason White to capitalise on more good work from his pack.

    Pat Howard's men continued to attack with vigour as Scott Bemand led a lightening counter attack from the hosts' own 22, but the half-back's pass was a fraction wide of Varndell who looked odds-on to build on his 14-try tally of last season.

    The scent of revenge was clear in the voices of the Welford Road faithful, and their men were responding, with Louis Deacon extending the lead to 12-3 on 18 minutes. More relentless phase-building saw Varndell move stealthily into midfield, and he was on hand to execute the overlap from which Deacon capitalised.

    Sale had no answers from Leicester's 20-minute burst, but the intensity of the hosts inevitably had to peter out, allowing Hodgson to haul his side in front on the half-hour mark.

    The classy England stand-off found the tightest of holes to attack in the Leicester defence, and he showed good acceleration to scythe through under the posts.

    Two further penalties extended the score to 16-12 in the champions' favour, and they took that lead into the break thanks to some fine last-ditch defensive work from Jason Robinson.

    Sale suffered two key injury problems ahead of the second period, with Ignacio Fernandez Lobbe replaced by brother Juan Martin, while Chabal departed for Chris Day.

    The loss of forward power had an instant impact, with the Tigers reclaiming the lead inside two minutes of the restart thanks to a super rolling maul that saw captain Corry emerge with the ball.

    However, this match was perched on a knife-edge, and typically Sale found an instant response, although the perpetrator could not have been predicted.

    French hooker Sebastien Bruno, finding himself out wide on the left flank, threw a super side-step to burst over from 15 yards for 23-19.

    Two Goode penalties then kept the pendulum swinging as Leicester edged ahead, before coach Pat Howard introduced the muscle of Henry Tuilagi and Seru Rabeni.

    A further three-pointer took the score to 28-23 in the Tigers' favour, and soon they had a numerical advantage as Chris Jones saw yellow for a cynical shoulder charge.

    Tuilagi and Rabeni's impact was significant in the closing stages and the latter almost created the match-clinching score so desperately coveted by the home support, but the ball was held up over the line.

    In the end, it made little difference as the Tigers' pack continued to go for the jugular, and the raised arm of referee Tony Spreadbury confirmed the try that handed Leicester all five points.</div>
  15. Cusker

    Cusker Guest

    How do u guys think of Bristols chances this year after a start like this and with are NZ signings coming in November and start of the year?Could be a good season!Dare i say it top 6?
  16. Not going to get relegated, but I can't see Heineken Cup rugby beckoning either.
  17. getofmeland

    getofmeland Guest

    Still along way to go, anyone can have a bad run and be in contention... you cant judge it on one game.....
  18. Boy

    Boy Guest

    Jon Clarke's broken his ankle and will be out for four months.
  19. wilko could be back with newcastle next friday.

    french international hooker rapahel ibanez has signed for another season with the wasps. he'll play till end 07-08 season. ibanez is now aged 34.
  20. Boy

    Boy Guest

    Chev Walker will play his first game of union on Sunday 5th November, playing at outside centre for Bath's Development (read Academy) XV to play against the Royal Navy U23's in Portsmouth.

    So that just puts him eighteen months or so ahead of Farrell, with his most suited position already established.
  21. Bullitt

    Bullitt Guest

    [​IMG] Worcester Warriors 18-23 Northampton Saints [​IMG]
    Match Details Half-Time: 8-13 Att:
    Venue: Sixways
    Date: Sat 11 Nov 06

    Quick Stats
    Tries: 5
    Conversion: 2
    Penalties: 4
    Drop Goals: 0
    [​IMG] 1 [​IMG] 0
    Previous Meeting
    Worcester 18-23 Saints
    Saints 12-24 Worcester
    Saints 25-34 Worcester
    Worcester 11-15 Saints
    Saints 21-22 Worcester

    Worcester woe continues against Saints Northampton bounced back to winning ways as they condemned the Warriors to their seventh GUINNESS PREMIERSHIP defeat of the season. Bottom side Worcester never let their heads drop and battled through to the final whistle but their only reward was a third losing bonus point of the season. Northampton, who lost 34-19 to struggling Harlequins last weekend, missed an early opportunity to take the lead when fly-half Carlos Spencer's penalty attempt from long range was wide of the uprights.

    The home side took the lead with a try in the right corner started from a catch and drive on the other side of the field with wing Aisea Havili getting the touchdown, but the conversion was missed and Spencer replied with two penalties to nudge the visitors in front.

    Saints increased their lead on the half hour as scrum-half Mark Robinson scampered over the line after a break from flanker Paul Tupai. Spencer added the conversion before Shane Drahm landed a 35-metre penalty.

    Trailing 13-8 at the interval, Worcester started the second half with some urgency with Drahm kicking his second penalty from 15 metres out in front of the posts after Saints strayed offside.

    But the Warriors were then on the back foot when lock Craig Gillies was shown a yellow card by referee Martin Fox for pulling down at the line-out.

    Saints took advantage of the extra man with ex-England hooker Steve Thompson scoring in the corner from a catch and drive.

    Just after the hour Worcester were back on level terms with flanker Tom Harding crossing the whitewash after a catch and drive and Drahm adding the touchline conversion.

    Referee Fox appeared to struggle to control the game with a number of tussles breaking out among the forwards but he only resorted to lecturing the two captains.

    Warriors defence was then again called into question as Thompson cruised through after a short line-out to score his second try of the game but Spencer failed to add the extras.


    [​IMG] Newcastle Falcons 3-14 NEC Harlequins [​IMG]
    Match Details
    Half-Time: 3-14
    Att: 10,004
    Referee: White Chris
    Venue: Kingston Park
    Date: Fri 10 Nov 06

    Quick Stats
    Tries: 2
    Conversion: 2
    Penalties: 1
    Drop Goals: 0
    [​IMG] 0 [​IMG] 0

    Previous Meeting
    Falcons 3-14 Quins
    Quins 39-23 Falcons
    Falcons 22-21 Quins
    Falcons 25-29 Quins
    Quins 18-11 Falcons

    Quins make it two from two NEC Harlequins extended their winning run at a rain-swept Kingston Park. David Strettle and Nick Easter scored tries, both converted by Adrian Jarvis. Matt Burke replied for the Falcons with a first-half penalty. Harlequins took another big step towards GUINNESS PREMIERSHIP survival with a professional performance at out-of-sorts Newcastle. Superb in defence, the visitors took full advantage of an error-strewn display by the home side to make it two successive wins against one of their relegation rivals.

    David Strettle and Nick Easter were the tryscorers, lifting Quins up to eighth in the table and leaving their opponents deep in trouble.

    Newcastle made six changes from the side that toppled Bristol last week, including handing a debut to 20-year-old fly-half Gavin Beasley in the absence of the unfortunate Jonny Wilkinson.

    Quins recalled fit-again wingers Strettle and Ugo Monye despite recording their first Premiership win of the season on Saturday.

    After a nervy start by both sides, Matthew Burke kept his cool to knock over a 40-metre penalty that put the Falcons ahead after three minutes.

    The veteran full-back needed to be on his toes at the other end to clear an Andy Gomarsall chip to touch as the Quins pack began to assert themselves.

    Missed tackles were keeping the home side penned in their own half and, when Monye finished a sweeping move in the corner, it looked to have cost them but the try was disallowed for a forward pass.

    More shocking Newcastle defending led to the inevitable, John Rudd failing to gather another kick forward, allowing Strettle to score. Adrian Jarvis converted with ease.

    Desperate at one end, the Falcons were a different prospect with ball in hand but Quins were giving their opponents a lesson in tackling and, despite losing Monye to injury, they weathered the storm.

    It gave them a platform for their second try, referee Chris White playing an advantage that allowed the outstanding Gomarsall to feed Jarvis, whose simple pass presented Easter with the touchdown.

    Jarvis converted and, as the rain began to fall, it was looking bleak for Newcastle going into half-time.

    Jason Oakes, back from suspension, failed to emerge at the restart and scrum-half James Grindle did not last much longer after being unable to shake off a first-half arm injury.

    More changes followed before a controversial decision from White prevented Newcastle getting back in contention, the ref pulling back Burke after he and Mathew Tait engineered a quick lineout.

    Rudd then blew a great chance to score legitimately when a superb Falcons attack, that began on the halfway line, released him into the corner and he failed to retrieve his own through kick.

    With 20 minutes remaining, the home side threw on new signing Loki Crichton but they conceded a needless penalty they were fortunate to see Jarvis miss.

    It did not matter as Quins comfortably held on for a deserved victory.


    [​IMG] London Irish 11-22 Gloucester Rugby [​IMG]
    Match Details
    Half-Time: 8-12
    Att: 9,880
    Referee: Pearson Dave
    Venue: Madejski Stadium
    Date: Fri 10 Nov 06

    Quick Stats
    Tries: 4
    Conversion: 2
    Penalties: 3
    Drop Goals: 0
    [​IMG] 0 [​IMG] 0

    Previous Meeting
    L Irish 11-22 Gloucester
    L Irish 28-14 Gloucester
    Gloucester 36-34 L Irish
    Gloucester 9-13 L Irish
    L Irish 25-10 Gloucester

    Simpson-Daniel stars for Gloucester against Irish England hopeful James Simpson-Daniel scored a stunning late solo try as table-topping Gloucester stormed to a fourth straight GUINNESS PREMIERSHIP win. The league leaders burst out of the blocks and opened the scoring after just four minutes. Former France hooker Olivier Azam stole an Irish line-out 30 yards out and from the resulting ruck Scottish number nine Rory Lawson darted down the blindside and flipped through the narrowest of gaps.

    Lawson, deputising for Peter Richards who is on international duty with England, was hauled down just short of the line but was still able to get the ball away to James Bailey to score in the corner, with Willie Walker converting to make it 7-0.

    Gloucester got their second touchdown in the 16th minute. A line-out take from Alex Brown, who was making his first start since September, released Azam peeling around his forwards. The Frenchman's pass was timed to perfection and the increasingly sharp Lawson raced home from 25 yards.

    The Exiles eventually got on the scoreboard with a Barry Everitt penalty with 12 minutes left in the half. Five minutes later they managed to add their first try, Everitt deciding if Irish could not go through Gloucester they would go over them. And his chip was missed by the visitor's covering defence and Riki Flutey pounced to score. Everitt missed the easy conversion to make it 12-8 to the Cherry and Whites.

    Ryan Lamb's imperious boot kept Gloucester in Irish territory for the remainder of the half but they failed to turn the pressure into points.

    Gloucester continued to play expansive rugby after the break and within three minutes the visitors were rewarded as the Irish pack was caught offside and Walker slotted a simple penalty from in front of the posts.

    The Exiles then put together a magnificent passage of play that moved them 50 yards up the pitch to the Gloucester five-metre line, where the Cherry and Whites gave away a simple penalty and Everitt brought Irish back within four points.

    London Irish were determined to get back into the game and managed to hold on to the ball for large periods and pressure a tiring Gloucester pack.

    However, the Exiles' eagerness to force the play backfired with just 10 minutes left as a loose pass from one-time England stalwart Mike Catt was met on the volley by Delon Armitage, with the ball flying up into the gut of Gloucester's Simpson-Daniel, who raced away to score under the sticks from 70 metres. Walker added a straightforward conversion to make it 22-11.

    Gloucester had further reason to cheer on a drizzly night in Berkshire, with England centre Mike Tindall returning to action off the replacement's bench late on following a calf injury.

    With Irish desperate to add a bonus point in the dying minutes, the expert boot of England hopeful Lamb kept the Exiles at bay, with a number of perfectly executed kicks from hand.
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