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Todd Blackadder: Bath better than they showed at Scarlets

Published 11/11/2016

Todd Blackadder was disappointed by his side's second-half display
Todd Blackadder was disappointed by his side's second-half display

Bath director of rugby Todd Blackadder admitted his side's pride had been dented by their 44-21 Anglo-Welsh Cup collapse to the Scarlets in Llanelli.

The West Country side, third in the Aviva Premiership, had appeared on course for victory when they led 21-9 at half-time at Parc y Scarlets.

But they conceded 35 unanswered points to a rampant home side after the break, leaving Blackadder scratching his head.

"I was really disappointed, especially with that last 20 minutes, it was unbecoming of the season we have had so far," said the former All Black.

"We are better than that, I haven't seen that before.

"But in hindsight, in the big picture, it may serve us really well. Our pride has been dented and it will galvanise us.

"It looked like we had the game in control, but we didn't win those collisions in the second half and credit to the Scarlets they played really well with a young side."

After losing at home to Leicester in their first match, Bath's hopes of making the knockout stages appear all but over.

Blackadder added: "Our priority in this competition has always been to develop, we gave some young guys a go, but our senior players need to lead the way in these games and they didn't do that tonight and they know that."

As for the Scarlets, they were understandably delighted with the manner of their second-half resurgence with skipper Emyr Phillips claiming two tries, and back-rowers Josh Macleod, Tom Phillips and Jack Condy the others.

Forwards coach Ioan Cunningham, who has taken charge of the side from Wayne Pivac for this competition, said: "Credit to the players, we spoke at half-time to stick with what we had in place, not to panic and I think it showed in the last half hour - it came together for us.

"We identified our line-speed in defence, ball retention, things we weren't happy with in the first half, the momentum swung our way in the second half and we took advantage of that.

"A win like that is massive for this team. For a young group of players, getting a win over a quality side like Bath is going to be huge for us as a region.

"A lot of individuals stood up, which is great for us, growing our depth and giving us headaches selection-wise moving forward this season.

"Full credit to the boys, it was a great performance."

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