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- Aviva Premiership
- 14th Sep 2013
- KO 15:15
- Ground: The Recreation Ground
- Att: 12,200
Aviva Premiership: George Ford kicks 17 points in Bath victory over Leicester
Bath's George Ford kicked five penalties and a conversion to inflict a first defeat of the new season on Aviva Premiership champions Leicester.
Ford, an ex-world junior player of the year, quit Welford Road this summer, helped Gary Gold's men to a tense 27-20 success at The Rec.
He converted centre Jonathan Joseph's first-half interception try and after Tigers were briefly reduced to 13 men when front-row forwards Tom Youngs and Logovi'i Mulipola received yellow cards Matt Banahan scored before the break.
That score handed the home side a commanding 18-point interval advantage although Leicester displayed admirable character and they fought back brilliantly.
Second-half tries by Steve Mafi, Ed Slater and Vereniki Goneva ultimately secured a losing bonus point.
It ensured a pulsating climax in the 100th-year anniversary fixture between two of English rugby's fiercest rivals, but Bath did enough to make it two wins from two after they triumphed at Newcastle last week.
Leicester, ravaged by an alarming early-season injury count that ruled out star players like Manu Tuilagi, Toby Flood, Ben Youngs, Geoff Parling and Tom Croft, enjoyed second-half dominance.
They scored 12 unanswered points from 21-3 adrift, but Ford - son of Bath first-team coach Mike Ford - calmed Bath's nerves, edging his team over the line despite Goneva's late effort.
There was a stoppage of almost 10 minutes near the end while Bath's replacement hooker Ross Batty required treatment before being carried off after he was felled attempting a tackle. It appeared to be a serious injury.
Play resumed with just over seven minutes remaining on the countdown clock and Bath turned the screw in terms of territory, which gave Ford a match-clinching penalty chance that he gratefully accepted.
Bath will head to Saracens next weekend seeking a third successive victory of their Premiership campaign.Aviva Premiership. Click here to bet.
Aviva Premiership Table
|Friday 5th September|
|19:45||Northampton vs Gloucester|
|Saturday 6th September|
|14:00||Sale vs Bath|
|14:00||Saracens vs Wasps|
|15:00||Leicester vs Newcastle|
|16:30||London Irish vs Harlequins|
|Sunday 7th September|
|14:00||London Welsh vs Exeter|
|Friday 12th September|
|19:45||Harlequins vs Saracens|
|Saturday 13th September|
|15:00||Gloucester vs Sale|
|15:00||Bath vs London Welsh|
|15:15||Exeter vs Leicester|
|Sunday 14th September|
|14:00||Wasps vs Northampton|
|15:00||Newcastle vs London Irish|
|Friday 19th September|
|19:45||Gloucester vs Exeter|
|Saturday 20th September|
|14:00||Sale vs London Welsh|
|15:00||Harlequins vs Wasps|
|15:00||London Irish vs Saracens|
|15:15||Bath vs Leicester|
|Sunday 21st September|
|14:00||Newcastle vs Northampton|
|Friday 26th September|
|19:45||London Welsh vs Gloucester|
|Saturday 27th September|
|15:00||Leicester vs London Irish|
|15:00||Saracens vs Sale|
|15:15||Northampton vs Bath|
|Sunday 28th September|
|14:00||Wasps vs Newcastle|
|14:00||Exeter vs Harlequins|
|Friday 3rd October|
|19:45||Bath vs Saracens|
Read the thoughts and opinions of Phil Edwards with skysports.com