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The Adventures of Sinbad with Gloucester Rugby's James Simpson-Daniel

By The Citizen  |  Posted: April 17, 2014

There are probably 100 bits and pieces you could pick apart and talk about following what was an incredibly dramatic West Country derby on the weekend.

Where do you start after such a defeat? It’s simple – discipline.

The discipline was not good enough. We have talked about it all season and how we cannot give referees reasons to penalise us and other teams opportunities to win matches because of our own indiscipline.

And there is no doubt, on Saturday, that indiscipline cost us.

You can blame a lost lineout or a charged down kick, but a lack of composure in those key moments has killed us all year. We address it every week so why is it still happening?

The players simply have to be accountable for their decisions and the consequences of them.

It was a West Country derby and you will always get that emotion.

If anyone thought it didn’t mean anything to the boys they certainly can’t doubt that.

The passion and intensity has to be there as a base but we just have to channel it better and have that self-control and discipline.

In all honesty, the second half was a farce and suddenly we were part of a derby that will be remembered and brought up for all the wrong reasons.

I don’t want to criticise referees but their decisions are so influential and I don’t think you can deny Mr Wigglesworth was very bad for both teams.

He will know it was not his best game and they will review what he did right and wrong.

Most of the big decisions he got right, although I’m not sure their yellow for a high tackle (Matt Garvey) was even a sin-binning.

You simply can’t criticise a player being punished for punching, but it was the little things, the management and communication throughout the game that was disappointing.

Very early in the game Bath were awarded a penalty and Billy Twelvetrees (pictured) went to speak to the referee but was brushed off.

He is our captain and wants to know the reasons so he can pass the message to the boys and as a team we can adapt.

A captain can have a big impact in the way a game is managed but Wigglesworth was very dismissive and in that incident it was almost as if he laughed at him.

It’s not as if Billy is a big and mean forward, he is very calmly spoken and diplomatic so it’s even more bewildering.

Another example is just before half-time with the penalty, Billy was told there was time to kick to touch but then the referee blew up.

Little things like that are very frustrating and perhaps the match would not have got out of control like they did if it was managed better. But we simply can’t hide behind refereeing decisions. We have not talked about that in our analysis, it has been all about what we got right and wrong to put us in those positions.

It's great that the boys have the Stinger to focus on after the weekend where they can go to Twickenham and play an expansive game on a big open pitch.

It should be a good match to be involved in.

They will certainly be driven by the Amlin Challenge Cup loss to Wasps earlier this month and Nigel (Davies) has already said in the team meeting that he hopes all the boys still feel like him – embarrassed by a very bad day in the office at Adams Park.

It’s another chance on their patch, although at Twickenham, but I know our supporters will make it feel like a home game.

It is not as though the defeat to them was months ago it was just the other week and it should still be raw and hurting.

They are definitely beatable. In that previous game we were so bad for the majority of the game but we weren’t thumped, we were right in it until the end.

If that passion and intensity from the Bath game is there and we keep our players on the pitch and not finish with 11 men we will be in with a very good chance.

Europe is still very much the target and seventh is still a very realistic target with Wasps, London Irish and Worcester as our games left. We have to target them and if we do it and get that spot it will be a great way to finish the season.

A home and away play-off against a French side would be a really positive way to finish the season, it would almost feel like a cup final and would be brilliant for the supporters.

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