Ben Morgan’s late try gave Gloucester a 24-17 win over leaders Exeter Chiefs in a Premiership thriller and Wasps fended off a Bristol Bears fightback to secure a 29-22 victory on Friday.
Exeter could have gone at least nine points clear of Saracens at the summit with a win but slumped to a third top-flight defeat of the season at Kingsholm as Gloucester moved up to third.
Nic White’s try put the Chiefs in front, but Gloucester led 10-7 at the break following a Jason Woodward score, set up by a towering Danny Cipriani kick, and five points from the boot of Billy Twelvetrees.
Joe Simmonds’ penalty levelled the scores before Willi Heinz touched down for the Cherry and Whites, yet the battling Chiefs made it 17-17 when Tom O’Flaherty raced through to score following a great break from Matt Kvesic.
Twelvetrees missed the chance to put Gloucester back in front from the tee, but Morgan was left with a simple finish in the right corner four minutes from time after Exeter were caught on the break and desperate defence from Johan Ackermann’s side right at the end denied the leaders.
The Cherry and Whites are back on the winning trail! GET IN! pic.twitter.com/39g66SDWIi
— Gloucester Rugby (@gloucesterrugby) February 15, 2019
Wasps came out on top in an entertaining clash at Ashton Gate, seeing off Bristol 29-22 to sit fourth.
Back-row Thomas Young, released from international duty along with Dan Robson and Michele Campagnaro, was among four Wasps try scorers as they claimed only a second victory in 10 matches.
Bristol trailed 19-3 at half-time and although they went over three times in the second half – big-money recruit Charles Piutau among the scorers – they gave themselves too much to do.
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