Aviva Premiership

Bath go top with battling derby win, Saints edge Sixways thriller

Bath moved to the top of the Premiership on Friday, but were made to work hard for a 16-9 victory over rock-bottom local rivals Bristol.

Wing Jack Wilson scored the only try of the night at The Rec, with Bath's Tom Homer and visiting fly-half Billy Searle each kicking three penalties during a scrappy encounter.

Wilson was left with a simple finish in the first half after Tom Ellis had broken clear and Bath kept their noses in front thereafter as a spell of late pressure from winless Bristol proved in vain.

A seventh success in eight league matches lifts Bath above Saracens and Wasps, who play later this weekend.

However, the win came at a cost as fly-half Rhys Priestland was forced off early after picking up a leg injury on his first Premiership start of the season.

There was late drama at Sixways as Northampton Saints edged out Worcester Warriors 18-17.

Worcester trailed by eight with two minutes remaining, but Bryce Heem's converted try gave the hosts hope and they were then awarded a penalty on halfway, only for Jamie Shillcock's kick to drift agonisingly wide.

Northampton's points all came from the boot of Stephen Myler.

At Kingston Park, Ollie Devoto, Thomas Waldrom, James Short and Will Chudley all crossed as Exeter Chiefs beat Newcastle Falcons 32-19.