Sunday, 28 October 2012

Moving in the right direction.

I sense the positivity is returning to the stands of the Rec. The game against Agen and Chiefs are to thank for this.

With the forwards playing as such a tight unit and powerful,  winning ball enabling the backs to spread it wide and release the fast duo on the wings. It now feels to many as Gary Gold's plans he spoke of are now starting to fall into place. I'm not saying that Bath have become the polished complete package, but its now evident how far forward they've moved on from the early few rounds of the Aviva Premiership.

The second half against Agen showed the move forward in development of the squad and how they have become a 'team' not a squad of individuals. To grind out an away win in France, which in no mean feat, showed heart and character in the team.

The first half against Exeter especially the first 20 minutes was so clinical and relentless tearing the Chiefs apart. The second half saw Bath rocked back on the back foot but defensively saw them withstand a pounding making over 100 tackles in the second half. A half that goes on for 54 minutes seeing two teams who just know the importance of the bonus points showed true character and what this fixture meant to them, basically what a true epic battle from both tribes.
Exeter are know as a team not full of individuals but a team who play together and I felt Bath were on a par with them in those steaks, plus the added bonus of the individuals flair.

Now for the part where I may play devils advocate and propose a suggestion why Baths game play has changed, why the game plan is finally coming off. This may annoy or even upset a few but I believe its due to the exit of one Mr Olly Barkley. It was evident from the early part of the season his choices of kicks were not executed in the intended manor, at times the decisions he also made often were not the right one. Who at the early stages wished for the ball to be passed along the line and not aimlessly punted down the field. I'm not dispelling the factor that he was a true stalwart for Bath but it felt as he was leaving earlier fixtures were forgotten and he was elevated to a god like status. The questions how can we go on without Olly, well for me I think Donald hasn't done a bad job and the return of Heathcote Bath will march on for the better. I don't wish to discredit his legacy at Bath as he was a fantastic servant for the club and aided Bath through his two stints in the Blue, Black and White colours, sometimes a lot was rested upon his shoulders. The point I'm trying to make is not to slate him just to point out there seems to of been a shift in the teams game style since his departure.

Bath are an ever evolving side and now it seems the early trepidation seems to fizzling out and the supporters are looking forward to some epic bouts and believe they can be victorious.

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