Bristol's Alapati Leiua
Alapati Leiua scored in his remaining recreation at Ashton Gate to finish his five-year profession at Bristol on a excessive
Bristol (14) 40
Tries: Sheedy, Piutau (2), Leiua, Fricker, Morahan Cons: Sheedy 4, Lloyd
Exeter (14) 33
Tries: Grondona, Hodge, Kenny, Woodburn, Ewers Cons: Simmonds 4

Six-try Bristol Bears beat Exeter to depart the Chiefs nearly sure to overlook out on the Premiership play-offs for the primary time since 2015.

Callum Sheedy and Charles Piutau traded first-half tries with Santiago Grondona and Josh Hodge.

A second from Piutau and Alapati Leiuia put Bristol ahead, however James Kenny and Olly Woodburn levelled the match once more.

However Toby Fricker and Luke Morahan gave Bristol a decisive lead earlier than Dave Ewers’ late comfort attempt for Exeter.

Exeter, who’ve reached each remaining since 2016, got here to Bristol realizing they wanted a victory to maintain alive any lifelike hopes of ending within the high 4.

However they now drop right down to seventh on 64 factors – with Sale leapfrogging them following their win at Wasps – and are 4 factors behind fourth-placed Northampton, who’ve a recreation in hand.

Whereas mathematically they will nonetheless attain the play-offs, they want Sale, Gloucester and Northampton to drop factors of their remaining matches, in addition to declare a bonus-point win at Harlequins on the final day of the marketing campaign.

Rob Baxter’s facet loved the higher of the territory and possession within the opening 20 minutes, however could not make it depend as Stuart Hogg noticed a attempt dominated out by the TMO for a knock-on within the build-up.

In opposition to the run of play, Sheedy then put Bristol in entrance.

An opportunistic Harry Randall noticed a niche, took a fast tap-and-go after an Exeter penalty, and handed inside to the Welshman who went underneath the posts.

Substitute Grondona drew Exeter stage, touching down from shut vary, however Piutau put Bristol again ahead, dancing via the visiting defence.

Hodge retaliated immediately, crossing within the nook, to go in all-square on the break.

Exeter noticed a second attempt dominated out for a late deal with on Piers O’Conor within the build-up and Bristol capitalised.

Piutau dived over for a second attempt earlier than a slick Sheedy back-handed cross launched Leuia, one in all three Bristol gamers making their remaining Ashton Gate appearances.

With Jack Bates within the sin-bin, Exeter used the person benefit to get again on equal phrases as Kenny discovered a niche and Woodburn broke free to the nook.

However the evening belonged to Bristol – who stay tenth within the desk – as Fricker intercepted a Henry Slade cross to race clear from his personal half, earlier than Morahan added their sixth attempt to wrap up the victory.

Bristol director of rugby Pat Lam advised BBC Radio Bristol:

“That was an enormous one for the group for the fellows going – these guys are phenomenal. After I take a look at already 8,500 season tickets [sold for next year], there is a large purpose why they do not have to purchase them after the best way our season’s gone. But it surely simply reveals you the assist we’ve.

“We talked about that, to exit and play with no concern. If you play a crew that actually must win, that is what makes it particular. That they had each purpose to play so we needed to be at our greatest and we had been tonight and it was good to see.

“We went 14-7 and we talked at half-time, it may go to the wire, it at all times does towards these guys.

“I assumed it was a harsh name, the yellow card on Jack Bates, after which we have had lots of these. There’s just a little little bit of inconsistency as you undergo this stuff.

“They had been towards all of it however they simply caught in there. Precisely what we mentioned, simply hold working, haven’t any concern, hold enjoying and we did a terrific job.”

Exeter Chiefs director of rugby Rob Baxter advised BBC Radio Devon:

“I am clearly disillusioned, however on the finish of the day the reality is immediately confirmed us we’re nicely off the place we might be and have to be.

“We’re not so good as we have to be so let’s get higher. If we might have been there or thereabouts on the finish of the season it’d’ve lined up a couple of issues we truly must take care of.

“Classes like immediately ought to be hard-learnt. We should always’ve been capable of rating factors on the market nevertheless it form of tells you the place we’re in that our primary execution hasn’t been adequate.

“The highest 4 has in all probability gone however we wish to qualify for Europe so we’d like to verify we’re there.”

Bristol: Piutau; Morahan, O’Conor, Leiua, Fricker; Sheedy, Randall; Woolmore, Thacker, Afoa, Attwood, Joyce, Vui, Jeffries, Luatua (capt).

Replacements: Byrne, Benz-Salomon, Armstrong, Harding, D Thomas, Uren, Lloyd, Bates.

Sin bin: Jack Bates (55)

Exeter: Hogg; Woodburn, Slade, Whitten, Hodge, J Simmonds, S Maunder; Hepburn, Yeandle (capt), Williams, Grey, S Skinner, Ewers, Kirsten, Vermeulen.

Replacements: Innard, Kenny, Schickerling, Jenkins, Grondona, Townsend, H Skinner, Hendrickson.

Referee: Luke Pearce


Author: Londonlad

Leave a Reply