Moody impresses on Bath return
April 23, 2011
Nick Abendanon also impressed for Bath at Twickenham © Getty Images
England captain Lewis Moody played an impressive 49 minutes to help Bath beat Wasps 43-10 at Twickenham on his return from the knee injury which caused him to miss the entire Six Nations Championship.
Bath head coach Steve Meehan revealed that Moody had taken a knock in training on Friday, but insisted he had suffered no adverse effects from today's game.
He said: "He took a knock and it's corking (a dead leg). It was just safer to get him off when we did. He will be playing next week."
Director of rugby Sir Ian McGeechan confirmed: "The medics are not worried."
Before his departure, Moody turned in a typical all-action performance and McGeechan said: "That's why he captains England. He leads by example and just wanted to play and get some tough training in, which he has for the last two weeks."
McGeechan declined to contemplate a situation which leaves Bath needing to win their final two matches, collect at least one bonus point and hope fourth-placed Northampton get nothing from their final match with Leeds in order to reach the Aviva Premiership play-offs.
He added: "We have just got to keep winning. If we don't do that it doesn't matter what happens elsewhere."
While Bath's backs grabbed the glory - with winger Tom Biggs scoring a first-half hat-trick, England's Matt Banahan crossing twice and centre Matt Carraro also scoring - McGeechan also praised the pack which ground down his former club very quickly.
"The forwards were good and we made some really good decisions tactically which gave us room to play," he said. "I don't think we expected that sort of return, but we were as accurate as we've been for a while."
Fullback Nick Abendanon also staked his claim for an England recall with an excellent attacking performance, but asked about their chances of making England's World Cup squad, McGeechan said: "You'll have to ask Martin Johnson. Tom (Biggs) put himself on the front foot and Abendanon is playing very well."
Leon Holden, the Wasps acting director of rugby who expects to learn next week if he will get the job on a permanent basis, said: "The game was over by half-time. If you can't hold onto the ball and keep possession, you are going to lose to a team like Bath.
"They are probably the best side in England for stinging you from turnovers. We turned the ball over four times and they hit us with 26 points. The positive for us was that some of the youngsters in the pack played well again. They will learn from this."
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
Tom Hamilton runs the rule over just where the six countries stand ahead of the global gathering in September