Gloucester go top

Gloucester moved to the top of the Premiership with a convincing 33-10 win over Northampton.

Iain Balshaw, Luke Narraway, Olly Barkley and Lesley Vainikolo all crossed the whitewash as Gloucester claimed the bonus point and moved two points ahead of neighbours Bath, who play today. Centre Barkley was particularly impressive as he came on as a sub for Anthony Allen in the second minute and proceeded to set up a couple of tries and score one of his own.

Head coach Dean Ryan lauded Barkley for his showing.

“For Olly Barkley to enter the fray today was ideal. He is still with England every Monday and Tuesday and then with us which is why he was on the bench,” said Ryan. 

“He is going to start next week and this would have been another week to look and watch us but it didn’t work that way.”

“We will make changes next week [against Calvisano in the Heineken Cup] because you cannot afford to have the same 15 players to get you through matches.

“We cannot afford to lose momentum and I would like to keep us on a roll through Christmas.”