Warriors 10-41 Exeter Chiefs
REIGNING Premiership champions Exeter Chiefs proved too dominant for the winless Warriors on Friday night under the Sixways floodlights.
After both sides traded early penalties, Exeter forward Sam Simmonds bundled his way over for the game’s first try 24 minutes in.
Jack Nowell then grounded from close range for a second before Chiefs lock Jonny Hill forced his way across the whitewash on the stroke of half-time to open up a 24-3 lead for the West Country outfit.
The hosts fought their way back into the contest after the break as Biyi Alo lunged over to reduce the deficit to 14 points.
But the visitors showcased their attacking prowess as Olly Woodburn touched down before Simmonds added his second of the game to wrap up the five-try thumping.
Gold made one change to the side which had faced Wasps five days prior with Alo coming in at tighthead for the injured Nick Schonert.
Exeter’s powerful pack gained early territory and the Sandy Park side went ahead after just three minutes when Gareth Steenson struck a penalty from close range.
The hosts were resilient in defence as the half wore on and were soon off the mark themselves when Sam Olver, who was brought on for the injured Tom Heathcote after just 11 minutes, levelled the scores with an almighty penalty kick from the halfway line.
Exeter then thought they had claimed the first try of the night when Woodburn raced onto the end of his own kick to slide over the line, but referee Ian Tempest ruled the score out for a knock on after consulting the TMO.
Woodburn was asking the Warriors defence all sorts of questions whenever he got the ball in space on the left.
But giant number eight Simmonds crashed over from close range for Exeter’s opening try, following good work from the forward pack.
The Devon outfit continued to bully their way forward and soon had their second try when Nowell finished off a good move, following scrum-half Nic White’s impressive break through the centre.
The evening continued to go from bad to worse for Worcester as the visitors opened up a 21-point advantage on the stroke of half-time when lock Hill raced down the left and rolled his way over the tryline, with Steenson’s conversion putting Exeter 24-3 to the good.
Gold’s men came out the blocks firing in the second half as they camped on the Exeter tryline and were awarded penalty after penalty, before giant prop Alo smashed through a melee of Exeter defenders to bundle his way over.
Olver’s conversion temporarily cut Exeter’s lead to 14 points at 24-10, but is wasn’t long before Rob Baxter’s Chiefs secured their try bonus point when a clever kick forward by Ian Whitten was gathered and offloaded to Woodburn, who raced to the line with ease.
Warriors’ fate had long been sealed when Simmonds bagged Exeter’s fifth try of the night late on to condemn the hosts to a third consecutive defeat.
Gold’s men travel to Kingsholm on Friday night to take on rivals Gloucester (kick-off 7.45pm).