Ruddock positive about future after loss

Mike Ruddock insisted his Warriors had showed glimpses of what fans could expect next season as they narrowly lost 23-20 to high-flying Bath at Sixways Stadium.

Director of Rugby Ruddock felt his side should have clung on for victory after edging ahead in a pulsating encounter as the game entered the last quarter.

However, he admitted if his side could produce the style of rugby they produced in flashes then there were reasons to be positive about the future at the club.

“It was a fantastic game but we made errors and our skills probably weren’t as good as theirs over the 80 minutes, we knew that could hurt us and it did,” he said. “We missed a couple of kicks at goal and if those had gone over you never know.

“We lost and that hurts, we felt we should have won the game after edging ahead towards the end. If we are serious about getting better we have got to shut the door and stop sides coming back at us as Bath did.

“They are a quality team and overall I felt their skills were better than ours. I like the way they play with width and tempo, it is something we want to do here.

“We saw it towards the end and unfortunately it didn’t quite happen for us, but you have to give Bath credit they showed character and heart to keep us out.

“Looking to next year, hopefully we can see longer periods like that in the game, then we will be a better two.”

Young wing Miles Benjamim lit up Sixways with a staggering brace – including a first half cracker that saw Warriors go the length of the field after Marcel Garvey and Rico Gear combined to break Bath down.

And Ruddock was full of praise for his speedsters as they sparkled in the Guinness Premiership.

“We are thankful that we have looked to develop people like Miles who has done so well for us this season,” he said.

“It was obvious from the start that Bath didn’t want a set piece contest, we only had one lineout in the first half. Sides are doing that to us now, they are trying to take away our set piece which has been our strength. I feared teams would do that and we needed a Plan B.

“Miles and Marcel and Rico give us a Plan B because if we can hold our skills and get the ball to those sort of guys they are capable of scoring tries, they showed that.

“Miles looks very strong and looks a worthy candidate for English honours for some time in the future.”

Warriors lost Pat Sanderson in the first half but Ruddock believes his skipper could make a return for the European Challenge Cup clash with Newcastle Falcons on Friday night.

“Pat puts his body on the line and he did that big time in the first half,” he said.

“The tackle area was very physical and he went back for more as he always does, got hurt and went back for more, eventually he took one hit too many.

“A dead leg forced him off but hopefully he will respond to treatment and we can get him back on the paddock for Friday against Newcastle.”