London Irish boss Nick Kennedy paid tribute to the Exiles supporters after his side went close to pulling off a victory over Aviva Premiership Rugby top four side, Bath, deep into injury time.
Roared on by a passionate home crowd, Kennedy’s men went through 31 phases on their way to the try line in the last seconds of the game with the visitors standing firm to ensure they left with the spoils.
“We felt the crowd in the last 10 minutes of the game when we really needed them, and they played a big part in almost getting us over the line at the end,” said Kennedy.
“The crowd gave us loads of energy and we need their fantastic support next week against an in-form Wasps team, who have a lot of top class players in their ranks.”
Outscoring Bath by two tries to one, it was Freddie Burns’ boot which made the difference for the visitors as he kicked four penalties and a drop-goal.
“Freddie Burns is on fire with the boot at the moment and he did the same to us in the Anglo-Welsh Cup earlier this month,” said Kennedy.
“He kicked very well and credit must go to Bath for playing in the right areas of the field at the right time.
“We’re disappointed to lose a very close game, but at the same time I’m really proud of the effort that we put in.
“Once again, we finished the game well and we showed our heart in coming back towards the end of the match. Our fitness levels are rising above other teams in the closing stages of games, which is pleasing and we need to continue to build on this.
“I’m really pleased with the way the boys trained all week and they bought a lot of that intensity into the game.”
London Irish welcome Wasps to the Madejski Stadium in the Aviva Premiership this Sunday (kick-off 3pm). Tickets start from £23 for adults and £3 for under 13s. Tickets are available from www.lidirect.co.uk or by calling 0118 968 1016 (Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm, Saturday 9am to noon).