Bath edge past 11-man Gloucester

Andover Advertiser: Bath captain Stuart Hooper celebrates victory at the final whistle Bath captain Stuart Hooper celebrates victory at the final whistle

Bath maintained their Aviva Premiership play-off hopes after claiming a dramatic late 18-17 victory over 11-man Gloucester at Kingsholm.

The home side had two players sent off - substitute prop Sila Puafisi and scrum-half Tavis Knoyle - while they also finished the game with centre Mike Tindall and hooker Huia Edmonds in the sin-bin.

Bath, who had three players yellow-carded themselves, prevailed through a 79th-minute penalty try - converted by fly-half George Ford - after Gloucester collapsed a maul. It was Bath's first league win at Kingsholm since 2006.

Centre Harry Trinder's 71st-minute try looked to have edged Gloucester home - fly-half Billy Twelvetrees chipped in with four penalties - while Bath captain Stuart Hooper scored a try and George Ford kicked two penalties before an incident-packed finale.

Bath forwards Carl Fearns, Matt Garvey and Dave Attwood were all yellow-carded, meaning Bath played 30 minutes of the game a man down, while the game went to uncontested scrums shortly after Puafisi departed.

Tonga international Puafisi received a red card from referee Tim Wigglesworth for a dangerous high tackle on Bath full-back Nick Abendanon, then Wales international Knoyle was sent off after he threw punches at Bath number eight Leroy Houston.

The Knoyle incident provided a spiteful end to a contest when neither side took a backward step, and Bath remain fourth going into next week's home appointment with relegation favourites Worcester.

Leicester maintained the pressure on second-placed Northampton with a four-try victory over Wasps at Welford Road.

The 27-15 bonus-point win meant Leicester closed the gap on the Saints, who meet leaders Saracens on Sunday, to just two points with just three games left.

England centre Manu Tuilagi starred for Leicester, scoring two of his side's four tries to take his total to three in five games since his return from injury.

Fiji winger Vereniki Goneva celebrated signing a new contract with a try and replacement scrum-half David Mele got the fourth. Wasps scored two tries through Guy Thompson and Tommy Bell.

Exeter took five points from a 38-33 victory at Worcester, although the home side came within a converted try of grabbing a dramatic win in a thrilling encounter.

Worcester were languishing 21-3 behind at one stage but fought back bravely to get two bonus points, through four tries and finishing within seven points of the Chiefs.

Scrum-half Dave Lewis, centre Sam Hill, fly-half Gareth Steenson and hooker Jack Yeandle got first-half tries for Exeter, while full-back Chris Pennell and David Lemi crossed for Worcester.

But the home side, bottom of the table and facing relegation, battled brilliantly in the second half through tries by hooker Agustin Creevy and Lemi's second against another Yeandle try.

Ryan Lamb kicked three penalties and two conversions as well while Steenson ended on 18 points by adding a penalty and five conversions to his touchdown.

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