Bath thrash lowly Bristol
Bristol's miserable Guinness Premiership season continued as they were thrashed 45-8 by local rivals Bath.
Last Updated: 07/03/09 6:12pm
Bristol stay marooned at the bottom of the Guinness Premiership after being crushed 45-8 by local rivals Bath.
The home team were awarded a penalty try and ran in five of their own as they condemned Bristol to a ninth defeat in 10 games.
Bath full-back Joe Maddock marked his 100th appearance with two tries, while Alex Crockett also scored twice and Butch James finished with seven successful kicks from eight attempts.
James tested the Bristol defence with an array of kicks before Maddock scored the opening try after five minutes.
Scott Bemand fed the Kiwi full-back from a ruck and he dummied his way past Tom Arscott before racing 40 metres to the posts, leaving an easy conversion for James.
Bristol continued to be put under pressure but their defence stood strong against the onslaught.
The visitors hit back against the run of play after 12 minutes when Lee Robinson latched on to Shaun Perry's chip down the touchline to score unopposed. Ed Barnes failed with the conversion.
Bristol were forced to change their hooker after 15 minutes when David Blaney went off with a knee injury and his replacement, Ollie Hayes, took some time to tune into the same wavelength as his line-out jumpers.
But Bath were in generous mood. James was well off target with his next opportunity, a penalty from 45 metres, and Maddock and Matt Banahan mixed up a quick lineout on their own 22.
Bristol might have scored through the industrious Nathan Brew but had to be content with an Ed Barnes penalty, which gave them an improbable 8-7 lead after 26 minutes.
However, the advantage did not last long as James followed up an excellent break by Shontayne Hape with a straightforward penalty.
Andrew Higgins was then stopped just short but Maddock was quick to claim the touchdown in the corner.
James' conversion from the touchline was spot-on and Bath held a 17-8 lead to the interval.
Barnes missed a penalty for Bristol soon after the break and Bath took control when James' grubber kick created a 46th-minute try for Crockett at the other end.
James again converted from the touchline.
Bristol brought off Perry after 50 minutes, and their challenge fell apart almost straight away. His replacement, Haydn Thomas, was sin-binned within two minutes of coming on and Bath scored two converted tries in his absence.
The first was a penalty try after three successive infringements on the line and replacement number eight Daniel Browne ran in another on the hour. James was successful with both conversions.
The South African number 10 was also on target after Crockett supported a sublime break by Nick Abendanon for his second score after 70 minutes.
Robinson's late yellow card for an illegal tackle on Bemand completed a miserable afternoon for the visitors.