Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 24 July 2014

Army ace impresses for Bath

Brad Davis was impressed by the impact of Semesa Rokoduguni on his debut

Fijian Semesa Rokoduguni wasted no time in making an impact at Bath as his two debut tries helped the home side beat Newport Gwent Dragons 36-15 in their LV= Cup opener.

A serving tank soldier in the British Army, wing-cum-centre Rokoduguni stood to attention throughout the pre-match Remembrance ceremony and sprung into action after eight minutes for his first try. He crashed through the Dragons defensive line again in the second half.

Bath first-team coach Brad Davis enthused over the performance of a player who signed up for Bath last month, saying: "Semesa has only been with us two or three weeks, but he looked pretty dangerous in the first half and he took his try well."

Rokoduguni has played for Bath's second string before today, and Davis said: "He has impressed in our United games and gives us much-needed depth in the back line and some versatility. He's a good addition to our squad."

The only downside for Bath from a comprehensive win was their failure to collect a fourth try and bonus point, a fact which was not lost on scrum coach Neal Hatley.

Hatley said: "It was important to get the win but we're not really satisfied with a lot of the accuracy in portions of the game. We looked good in parts but we are probably disappointed that we left a bonus point try out there.

"We didn't really complete what we tried to do. Teams will try to stop you scoring, but we've got to be better than that. We've got to be more accurate in those phases to come away with the tries."

Hatley added: "The Premiership is the bread and butter - we make no bones about that. The LV= Cup is a route into Europe though and will be treated with respect, but we do have to rotate the squad a little bit and give the younger guys an opportunity to prove themselves at first-team level."

Dragons head coach Darren Edwards said there were satisfying aspects in his side's display.

He said: "You'll always be judged on results, but for us coming here today we had to look at our performance and aspects of it. We had a good step up in many areas, which pleases me. There are small steps to get us back on track and we took some of those. I thought all the young players put in really good performances."