Warriors off the mark
Worcester score three tries to ease relegation fears at Sixways
Last Updated: 26/01/08 5:51pm
Benjamin: Full of running
Worcester Warriors turned over Bristol 25-5 to claim their first Guinness Premiership win of the season.
Pat Sanderson (53), Greg Rawlinson (62) and Dale Rasmussen (75) scored the three Worcester tries after Tom Arscott (12) had handed the visitors an early lead.
And fly-half Loki Crichton put in a sterling performance with the boot, kicking 10 points, to ease Worcester's relegation fears.
Worcester are now six points ahead of bottom side Leeds and just eight points behind Bristol and London Irish just above them.
First blood went to the West Country side though when winger Arscott collected his own chip over the Worcester defence to score the game's opening try.
Crichton hit back with two penalties to give Worcester the lead and the home side went into half-time 6-5 up.
Bristol hooker Mark Regan, who had erred frequently in the lineout in the first half, went off with a shoulder injury straight after the restart to give Brian Ashton a scare ahead of England's RBS Six Nations opener against Wales.
Captain Matt Salter then made matters worse by earning a yellow card for killing the ball on his own line and from the resulting penalty Crichton was able to extend Worcester's advantage to four points.
In Salter's absence, Worcester skipper Sanderson marked his return from injury by finishing off a rolling maul as Bristol's depleted pack came under increasing pressure.
Crichton then sent big New Zealand second row Rawlinson over for the game's third try and the fly-half's conversion secured Worcester a 15-point lead.
And a well-worked corner try for centre Dale Rasmussen finally completed the scoring and sent Sixways into rapturous celebration.
The result eases the pressure on Worcester director of rugby Mike Ruddock, while Bristol coach Richard Hill will be glad of the forthcoming break in the league to restore some confidence in his wounded side.