South African duo at the double as Saints sink Bath

Saints' South African stars had a field day at cinch Stadium at Franklin's Gardens, with Juarno Augustus and Courtnall Skosan both scoring twice in a 40-19 win against Bath.

Saturday, 4th December 2021, 5:03 pm
Updated Saturday, 4th December 2021, 5:09 pm
Juarno Augustus scored twice for Saints against Bath

Augustus doubled up during the first period as Saints flew into a 28-12 half-time lead.

And after Bath briefly threatened a fightback early in the second half, forcing Sam Matavesi into the sin bin, Skosan made the game safe with a brace of his own.

Rory Hutchinson and Tommy Freeman also dotted down as Saints made it back-to-back Gallagher Premiership wins, earning a try bonus point on both occasions to step into the league's top four.

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But for Bath it was more misery as they lost to Saints for the first time in five meetings and suffered their ninth defeat in as many league games this season.

Saints had come out of the blocks quickly against the league's bottom side, cutting Bath apart from their first attack, with Freeman combining with Hutchinson on the right, allowing the centre to cruise in for the score.

Dan Biggar converted and it was 7-0 to Saints inside the opening two minutes, but Freeman soon had to do well defensively to intercept after Ben Spencer had charged towards the home 22.

However, Bath were looking vulnerable defensively and when Saints went on the charge again, the door swung open.

Skosan did well to keep the ball in close to halfway and then some key contributions from Karl Wilkins and David Ribbans allowed Skosan to send Freeman in for his side's second score.

Biggar converted again and Saints led 14-0 inside 15 minutes.

But Bath responded, gaining ground with a series of penalties before they rumbled over from a dominant lineout drive through flanker Sam Underhill.

Danny Cipriani sent the conversion to the left of the posts to leave the gap at nine points.

But Cipriani was soon heading off with a head injury and with Spencer down for some time, Saints pounced.

Fraser Dingwall did brilliantly to carry the ball towards the line and after he was stopped just short he offloaded to the onrushing Augustus for his first Saints try.

Biggar converted and Spencer was forced off, having spent a long time being treated.

The blows kept coming for Bath as lock Mike Williams, a late replacement for Josh McNally, who missed out due to illness, was sin-binned for a high tackle on Biggar.

Saints kicked to the corner to try to get their bonus-point score, but George Furbank knocked on and the attack was over.

But it didn't take long to find that fourth try they wanted as Augustus went over, with Biggar converting again.

Bath hit back before the break as more good maul work took them close to the line before prop Lewis Boyce powered over.

Tom de Glanville converted and the half-time whistle was blown.

Bath then lost Williams to a head injury two minutes into the second half, but the away side soon put together a long period of pressure, resulting in a yellow card for Matavesi and a try for Will Stuart.

De Glanville converted and Saints were desperately searching for some intensity in their game, with the home crowd roaring them forward.

And the players responded with Dingwall sending Skosan in out wide for a key try.

Biggar missed the conversion, but Bath were running out of steam and Saints made them pay as Furbank, at 10 after Biggar was given a breather, sent a crossfield kick into the hands of Skosan for the wing's second score.

Furbank converted and the game was safe with 12 minutes to go.

Saints: Furbank; Freeman, Dingwall (Litchfield , Hutchinson, Skosan; Biggar (Sleightholme 63), Mitchell (James 67); Waller (Auterac 45), Matavesi, Painter (Hill 45); Ribbans (Coles 68), Moon (Ratuniyarawa 45); Wilkins, Ludlam (c), Augustus.

Bath: De Glanville; Rokoduguni, Butt, Ojomoh, Muir; Cipriani (Hamer-Webb 21), Spencer (Fox 26); Boyce (Vaughan 68), Dunn (du Toit 58), Stuart (Rae 50); Williams (Richards 42), Ewels (c) (de Carpentier 62), Ellis, Underhill, Bayliss.

Referee: Karl Dickson