Bath are worried that their No 8, Taulupe Faletau, will be absent for a number of weeks after he picked up a knee ligament injury in the 24 – 20 Champions Cup defeat at Toulon on Saturday.
He was taken out by Mathieu Bastareaud but the pair were not penalised for the incident that took place on Bath’s line just before the home side scored their second try.
At the time Bath were leading but instead of being awarded a penalty they soon conceded one and the game soon started to fall apart. After the weekend’s match Todd Blackadder, the team’s director of Ruby, said, “I do not know if it is a repeat of last season’s injury. He has suffered medial ligament damage and it does not look good. He will certainly miss Saturday’s match against Toulon. Bastareaud entered the ruck from the side and there was inconsistency around the breakdowns. There was penalty and reward for doing the same thing and in games as tight as this it comes down to little things.”
Blackadder also said that the penalty decisions were inconsistent and the result has left him disappointed. Nonetheless, he says that he is proud of his team and believes that they will do better in the return.
Bath was in the lead for the majority of the match and captain Matt Garvey acknowledged that the team were disappointed with the result, “We came here for four points, not one in defeat. We spoke in the changing room about how gutted we were. To compete so close having played so well was tough to take as we felt we deserved to win, but at the same time it is encouraging for Saturday.”
While they will be without Faletau in their next match, they will benefit from the return of England flanker Sam Underhill from concussion.