VIDEO: Comeback falls just short as University of Bath are edged out by Durham in BUCS Super Rugby top-four thriller

07 December 2023

The University of Bath men’s 1st XV saw a spirited comeback fall just short as they slipped to a narrow 35-33 BUCS Super Rugby home defeat to Durham on Wednesday.

A pulsating top-four contest at the Team Bath Sports Training Village saw the Bath Building Society-sponsored hosts twice lead in the first half through a brace of tries from Number 8 Ted Johnson, both converted by Iwan Price-Thomas.

Durham replied in kind on both occasions and then went ahead themselves with a third converted try but Bath closed the gap to 21-19 just before half-time when hooker Jasper Spandler touched down following an unstoppable rolling maul.

The visitors started the second half strongly and two converted tries saw them open up a 35-19 advantage but Bath fought back strongly and a well-worked bonus-point try for Mackenzie Graham, again converted by Price-Thomas, got them right back in the game.

They closed the gap to two points when co-captain Tom Cowan forced his way over and Price-Thomas added the extras but they couldn’t quite find a winning score as Durham held on the win. Watch the Bath tries here:

Next up for Bath, who are also supported by Team Bath sponsors Rengen, is the last match before the Christmas break – and it’s a big one as they welcome old rivals Loughborough to the Sports Training Village on Wednesday 13th December. Kick-off is 6.30pm and entry is free.

Match stats

University of Bath starting XV: 1 Archie Stanley, 2 Jasper Spandler, 3 Alfie Griffin, 4 Will Jeanes, 5 Josh Dingley, 6 Mackenzie Graham, 7 Tom Cowan (cc), 8 Ted Johnson; 9 Elis Horgan, 10 Raff Weston, 11 Oli Sedgwick, 12 Will Roue, 13 Ludo Kolade (cc), 14 James Short, 15 Iwan Price-Thomas. Replacements: 16 Max Pearce, 17 Claudius Wheeler, 18 Jai Sahi, 19 Eddie Erskine, 20 Iwan Coyle, 21 Tom Carr-Smith, 22 Louie Hennessey, 23 Alex Clayton.

Tries: Johnson 2, Spandler, Graham, Cowan.
Conversions: Price-Thomas 4.

Durham starting XV: 1 Oscar Stott, 2 Chris Poole, 3 Hamish Murray, 4 Finn Baker, 5 Jake Spurway, 6 Arthur Green, 7 Harry Willard, 8 Marcus Rhodes; 9 Max Pepper, 10 Cal Grieve, 11 Charlie Coe, 12 Toby Thame, 13 Ben Motamed, 14 Olly Walker, 15 Patrick Bishop (c). Replacements: 16 Josh Naftalin, 17 Mark Dormer, 18 Alex Radcliffe, 19 Osian Thomas, 20 Jonny Smith, 21 Jacob Head, 22 Freddie Charles, 23 Aidan Boyle.

Tries: Spurway 2, Green, Baker, Pepper.
Conversions: Grieve 5.

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