Go unbeaten and a top four place should be in our grasp
THE challenge now for Gloucester is to go unbeaten in the Premiership for the rest of the season – a run which should secure them a top four place, but isn't guaranteed to.
The remaining fixtures will all be difficult, but they play the top teams at home, in the shape of Saracens and Harlequins, and the struggling teams away, including a trip to bottom-of-the-table Sale.
Going into the Exeter away game at the end of the season, they could do with being in the play-off qualification places, because Sandy Park is a difficult place to go at any stage of the season, let alone under the pressure of it being a must-win.
Victory over Bath would have been a huge fillip for the Cherry and Whites heading into a two-week break when the LV= Cup will be decided.
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But it wasn't to be and the second prize of a losing bonus point meant the trip to the Rec was by no means a disaster.
You have to highlight the kicks that were missed by Freddie Burns on his return from injury.
Hopefully this was just an off day and normal service will be resumed soon on what has been an excellent season with the boot for the fly-half.
More of a concern for Nigel Davies will be the lack of set piece parity the Gloucester forwards achieved.
The performance of the forwards seems to have swung dramatically from game to game but with all hands on deck when the Six Nations is over in a couple of weeks, you would expect the pack to start firing again.
I don't think there could be any complaints about the two big decisions that went against Gloucester in the Bath match.
The penalty try looked correct to me, as did the Darren Dawidiuk tip tackle.
The tip tackle is such a sensitive area of the game at the moment that it's almost not worth ever lifting a player off the ground.
There was no malice from the Gloucester hooker, but once you lift a player up like that you are putting yourself in the danger zone.
The way the league table looks at the moment the top three places are sewn up by Saracens, Harlequins and Leicester.
Gloucester are left to battle it out with Northampton and Wasps for the remaining spot in the play-offs and it will probably go down to the wire.