JAMES FORRESTER and Bristol Rugby's head coach, Richard Hill, have been named Guinness Premiership Player and head coach of the month for September.
In this year of anticipation for club and country, the Guinness Premiership monthly awards are especially significant; with 17 nations represented in the world's most experienced domestic league, only the most outstanding individuals will be recognised for both the award and national selection come 2007.
On his win, Forrester said: "I worked very hard over the summer to get myself in the right physical condition and I am obviously very pleased with how the season has started for myself in terms of form and fitness. But I could not have won this award without the contribution of my team-mates because the start we have made this season has been a great team effort - I think it is great for me and the team."
The voting panel Chairman, SKY's Miles Harrison, said: "For some time now, James Forrester has been a prodigious talent and his form in the first month of the Guinness Premiership may well have strengthened his case for international recognition. Certainly, those around him at Gloucester believe he has never been better equipped to meet that challenge."
Speaking straight after the game, skipper Billy Twelvetrees told GRTV that losing at home to Bath, in front of a tremendous home support, was desperately disappointing and that the whole team were hurting in the dressing room.
Speaking to the local media this week, Richard Hibbard expressed his excitement ahead of the West Country derby and that there is an extra spring in the step of the Cherry and Whites ahead of the tough challenge.
With such a short turnaround between the two games, and Gloucester looking to reintegrate several players into the line-up after the Autumn international series, Tom Savage told GRTV that the Cherry and Whites will keep changes to a minimum for the European Rugby Challenge Cup game in Zebre on Saturday.
On a tough evening at Kingsholm, Gloucester could escape neither a suffocating Bath defence, nor the whistle of referee Greg Garner as six penalties and a penalty try paved the way to a 39-16 win for the visitors.