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Match Report

06 May 2001: Wasps v Bath

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Match Report
Wasps's Badge Wasps 31
Bath's Badge Bath 36
Fixture Type: Premiership Venue: Home
Match Date: Sun 06 May 2001, Kick Off: 16:30

Wasps 31 Bath 36

Zurich Championship Semi-Final
6 May, 2001. Loftus Road, KO 4.30pm

Wasps season came to end with a titanic battle against rivals Bath, in a match they will feel they should have wrapped up after a wonderful first half. Robbed of their captain Lawrence Dallaglio in the second half, it was Bath who proved the more clinical side and ran out 31-36 winners.

Shayne Roiser thought he'd got Wasps off to the perfect start in just the second minute, when a Dallaglio pass put him through to touchdown. But the touch judge ruled Roiser was off-side and the score was disallowed.

Two minutes later Wasps did get on the score sheet with a Logan penalty, and the tally was soon doubled with a second penalty confidently struck by the Zurich Premiership's top scorer.

The match was littered with penalties, which slowed the opening twenty minutes. Eventually it was Bath who managed to squeeze through for a try. With Lawrence Dallaglio down at the far end of the pitch being treated for an injury, David Barnes picked the ball up in the ruck to hop over for the first try of the semi.

Perry converted, but not before Kenny Logan had charged out to get finger-tips to the ball, only to watch it edge over.

Logan edged Wasps into the lead again three minutes later with a third penalty before Munster bound centre, Rob Henderson jinked his way through the Bath defense to score.

Logan proceeded to scuff a simple conversion to the confusion of all at Loftus Road. Nevertheless, the Scot soon made amends on 28 minutes, kicking a long penalty from the left to make it 17-7.

Having lost on a try in the second minute, Shayne Roiser duly grabbed a legitimate touchdown on the half hour.

The winger kicked the ball up field and his pace and a good bounce allowed him to pick-up and score. Logan again consolidated the score.

Just when Nigel Melville's men looked to be running away with it though, Tom Voyce took advantage of some confusion in the Wasps ranks over a possible knock on, to run through for a try.

A missed penalty on the stroke of half-time meant Wasps were unable to extend their lead further and went in at the break 24-14 to the good.

Bath came out in the second half firing and duly grabbed a try with three minutes gone. A brilliant cross field kick from Mike Catt was picked up by Balshaw, who dropped in down to Borthwick to kick on and chase. With the try a certainty, Rob Henderson pulled his man back and the referee ruled it to be a penalty try.

They then took the lead on 48 minutes when Henderson spilled the ball in a crunching tackle from Matt Perry, and Iain Balshaw weaved through Wasps to grab five points. The lead wasn't further extended however, as Kenny Logan blocked the conversion at the second time of asking.

On 59 Logan had a chance to tip the balance in the home side's favour, but his kick went wide.

Wasps supporters had their hearts in the mouths on 62, when a Bath try was held up and the subsequent scrum lead to a knock on from the visitors to let Wasps off the hook.

They weren't off the hook for long however. Bath's persistent pressure payed off and Lyle scored from a brilliant cross field pass from Mike Catt.

The damaged was minimised again with a missed conversion from Perry.

The game wasn't beyond an inform Wasps though and they tied the match up 31-31, when Fraser Waters ran on to a pass from Lewsey to touchdown under the posts. Logan made it a full seven points.

Logan's kicking boots went astray again with five minutes to go, when he sent a penalty chance go begging and with it a potential match winning three points.

It was to prove costly two minutes from time, when a string of wild kicks from King and Lewsey let Tom Voyce in for a second try. But once again Perry missed his conversion.

His miss was of no consequence however, and Bath completed a hat-trick of victories over Wasps this season and booked a spot at Twickenham against Leicester.


Tries: Henderson, Roiser, Waters

Cons: Logan 2

Pens:Logan 4

BATH: 36

Tries: Barnes, Voyce 2, pen try, Balshaw, Lyle

Cons: Perry 3


H-T: 24-14